Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas


Hello friends and family!
So I received some gifts from some members and friends from back home for christmas. That was really nice. I appreciate all the gifts I got. I love you all and am grateful that you are always thinking of me. 
On christmas eve we ate so much! We went to teach a family who had just finished cooking dinner. So they fed us. It`s like rooster, with veggies, and rice and bread. With soda. Then we went to a family’s house to eat dinner. Basically the same exact thing. Then we went to Bishop`s house for dinner and ate rice, meat with jalapeƱo sauce, salad, and for dessert...tres leche and ice cream!!! It was so good but I Was so stuffed. 

Christmas day was normal. I opened some gifts but then we went to work. Funny story. So I was wearing a nicer shirt and we went to visit a convert...e___. he is like 12. He says to me, `why do you look so elegant today?' haha! I explained because I get to talk to my family. He says later, `is it easy to find work there in California? Cuz maybe if I serve my mission there, I will stay for a bit and I could visit you.` haha. he is so cute! 

The highlight of my day was skyping my family!!! I got to talk to almost all my family. Found out exciting news. Now I just have to make it until mothers day to talk again. haha! When we got back to our house we realized we didn`t have the keys. Yep...we had locked the keys in the house and it was 9pm. We called our district leader to let him know. We woke up our neighbor who owns the house to see if they had another key. They searched and found a key to open the gate but not the door. The elders go back to the church to see if we left them there. Nope. So what they did is , before our house was connected with the other house but they built a wall to separate it. only the wall doesn`t reach the ceiling all the way. So the husband climbed up and squeezed himself through the top of the wall and the ceiling, into our room. And there were our keys on the desk. We were in such a hurry to talk to our families that we left them. We finally managed to get in the house at 10.30 pm haha. 

The 26th we met with other zones for our christmas activity with  president. It was great. We had a nice lunch. We played sports. We had talks, and we did a gift exchange....i got nutella!!!! yes! thank you newbies! haha. They had a slideshow with pictures from our families! And then president gave us each a bag with a pendant, candy, photos, and a letter from our family!!! It was great!!! I also saw my old companion and the elders from my other area, and my mom. (trainer) It was a great activity. 

On friday at our district meeting we talked about goals and set a goal to have more families teaching. I told my companion that we would find a family. Well that day we did. And we put a baptism date with them. My heart has never felt so full of joy before. 


Sometimes I wonder why I receive so many miracles. At times I don`t feel worthy to have them. But with each miracle that I get, I realize that I am worthy of them. My district leader told me that he was happy for us in finding the family. That miracles come after the trial of our faith. 

 There is this less active who I have taught only two times. He has a drinking problem. We are teaching his daughter. Well he went to church last week and brought us suckers, went to the christmas activity and now this sunday. He was there way early like at 8.30. He goes, hermanas I brought a gift for you. He pulls out a pack of ritz crackers for each of us. He apologizes because they had kinda broken. We said it was fine and thanked him. Then he pulled out 2 cans of juice! haha! So before church we drank the juice and ate the crackers. Literally the whole day my comp and I were falling asleep. In every lesson. I don`t know why.


As far the new year...I am realizing how important goals are. i am going to put goals this year that matter, and i am going to do all i can to be a better person. 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
love,
hermana chase

¨The critical question is not one of getting into the kingdom but of staying in the kingdom-of enduring to the end. For we must choose on an ongoing basis to remain, and that choice must be reflected in what we love and in what we seek. That is why enduring to the end is the fifth principle of the gospel. Daily, our question shouldn`t be ´have i made it to the kingdom yet?` but rather , `do i still want to stay?` ¨ -stephen r. robinson

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

another baptism and almost Christmas!!


FELIZ NAVIDAD everyone!!! Wahoo!!! So Christmas day at 7pm I am going to skype my family!! I am so excited!!! My first and last christmas here in good ole nicaragua. 

So we had an activity this week with some of the youth where we set up a table at the park with phamplets, videos, liahona`s, book of mormons, proclamation to the world..etc. Then we went and contacted people in the park and brought them over to the table where they could take what they wanted. we took their name and address and telephone number so that we can visit them later on. It turned out pretty good actually. 

So random thought....I was reading 2 Nephi 2:7 where it talks about an infinite atonement. I thought...you might think it is a bit weird...but for some reason it came to my mind...the atonement of Jesus christ is for everyone. He didn`t just atone for his family or friends. He suffered the pains for all. So the thought that came to my mind which for me was a tender thought was that Jesus Christ suffered the pains of my future children. I don``t know why I thought that, but it was a tender thought to think that Christ suffered for my future family. 

So...I don`t know if you remember G_____ She is 14 years old and lives with members here in the ward. When she was a baby her mom signed a paper that said she didn`t want her, and a few years later her dad didn`t want her, her aunt didn`t want her...so she has nobody. She is living with this family until January where she will go to some center for 4 years...until she is 18 when she can live her own life. They had told us that in order to baptize gabriela we had to get a signature from the ministry of families. So my comp and I went down there to talk to the lady in charge of G____ case. BUT...she wouldn`t sign the freaking paper. She said that it was G___ decision and that in the center it could be any religion. She didn`t want to have g__ get baptized to only have to change her religion. Blah blah....I was so upset. I explained to her that even if this was g___ wanted...blah blah. But no...we left and as soon as we exited the building I just let it all out and cried. and cried. I was so frustrated. Here was a girl who literally has nothing in her life and when she finally found something, she can`t have it. I called the Zone leaders but they just made me more upset. Bascially he said to go back to the lady and pull out a scipture. My comp and I were kinda a wreck. Frustrated and sad. We ended up going back home and we said a prayer together. Then we went to talk to G___. President Russell came to our Zone meeting and we talked to him. He said the same, that we need the signature of this lady. or at least a paper that the lady writes saying that this family can sign for her. We went back to talk to the lady, but she didn`t want to sign it. She said no. In the end the family who she is living with has a paper that says for now she is basically responsible for gabriela. And the lady from the office signed it. So we quickly called our ZL and they said that with this paper she could be baptized....no this was friday afternoon. So we quickly called the bishop and arranged everything for saturday. It was perfect. I was so happy! And g__'s face was priceless when she found out. So saturday she was baptized. Us and the elders sang a song. I don`t remember the title in english. haha. after the baptism she told me that she felt something. It was so great! Then sunday she was confirmed!!! Now when she leaves for the spirit she can take this gift with her wherever she goes. 

So we also had a christmas ward activity. They had dances and songs, and food. It was good. We were supposed to sing but we weren`t on the program so we didn`t haha.

There was also one night where I woke up at 3:30 and heard like weird screaming. But it didn`t sound human or like an animal. I was awake for 1 hr. I was so scared. Our neighbors didn`t hear anything. They think it was just drunks...but who knows. 

Oh when we were at the zone meeting president came up to me and told me that he knew it was hard for me with a mini missionary but he wouldn`t have given me it if he knew I couldn`t handle it. Oh...so he also talked to the DL`s and if anyone calls another missionary out of your zone it`s pack your bags time. Yep. This new president likes to send people home  A LOT!. 

i love you all! and merry christmas!!! I am so grateful to be here during this wonderful christmas time!!! 
love,
hna chase

Monday, December 16, 2013

Another Baptism! and I finally have a real missionary companion again


HOLA!!!
So I was with a mini missionary from our ward. Hermana Alonzo. I liked  being with her. She was fun and we got along super well. Well...we made a CHRISTMAS TREE!!! it is literally the best christmas tree here in Nicaragua. haha. It is maybe 2 ft tall....haha. Funny story...so the catholics here have a day where they celebrate mary. Its called purisima. They put her out on their patio and then they walk around all day and if they find a house with mary they sing songs. The thing is that there are LINES of people waiting to sing songs at houses. Because after you sing, they family gives you food or something. So this day I was joking because I was hungry...I told my companion...lets just go wait in line...I am hungry. haha. It´s free. haha. Well, where they have mary some people have like greenery around her. So we were walking by a house and I saw green. I said...our tree will be better than that tree (this was before we made it). My companion looks at me and says, what tree? That is for purisima...virgin mary...haha!!! super funny! 

So the day of transfers there was a bit of a mix up. The companion who was supposed to stay with had some changes...so I ended up going in a trio again with hermana hansen and hermana herrera, which was fine. I love them. 

So my new comp....drum roll... Haha. First of all, I am not training. But I am senior companion. Elder portillo said he talked to president and president asked for names who would be good to train. He mentioned my name but president said that I have one more change before I am going to train...so who knows. Anyway, my comp is Hermana Vargas. From Guatemala. She is 22 years old and has 4 months in the mission. She talks a lot. About out of the 17 people we contact each day I talk to about 2. haha. But we will work on that. In the lessons we teach about even. 

We are teaching a girl whose name is L___. She is 21 and is the daughter of a less active. She has some nervous problems. She said she got sick in 2006...

We had an activity with our ward. We taught the members how to share the gospel with their friends. So us missionaries did a practice first using a pamphlet. Then we had the members practice with each other using a pamphlet. we also gave them a card to give to their friend in where they write their name, address and when we can contact them. Its a reference card. It worked out great. 

So we put a baptism date with another joven. haha. All my baptisms in the mission will be young people. But thats better right...then they can serve missions. haha! 


We had a meeting as district and the lesson was on the atonement. It made me think a lot. He used the story when christ asks simon peter if he loves him. He asks three times. Its john 21.15-17. It made me think. We all say we love christ, but then there are times when maybe we don`t work as hard, or do what we are supposed to. If we love him, are we doing all we can?

So saturday... we had 1 baptism!!! E_____!! my first baptism again in 4 months!!! I was happy! G___ couldn`t...the thing is that nobody has custody of her. Her parents signed a paper that says they don`t want her basically. The family she lives with is a family that takes in kids for 2 weeks until they have a home...well its been more than 2 weeks so they don`t have custody of her either now. Our mission pres said that if we can have a representative of the ministiry of families sign, she can get baptized. Well saturday  the lady wasn`t working so this week we will get the signature so saturday she can get baptized.  I`m not going to lie. It was hard for me. We brought her to the baptism. She asked me when she could get baptized. I told her the next week. Then after the baptism when we were walking out she says, the next one will be mine. haha. i love her. She liked the baptism though. Her favorite part was when he went under the water. So...E___ is now baptized!!! wahoo!!! haha. They confirmed him after, and we were a bit confused at why. I thought well maybe because he was blessed as a baby and has asisited  (means attended) his whole life its different. Well sunday bishop talked to our District Leader and he was re confirmed sunday. haha. 

After the baptism we went to g___ bday party. It was so cute she kept telling the mom she lives with that she loves her. And sometimes calls her mom. 

Sunday we had 5 investigators. G___ hugged me while I was talking to someone, and it just made me think how much i love these people. really. 

So don`t worry we are being taken care of. We have like 3 dinner appointments on the 24th. We are eating as a zone, then going caroling. Then with a family then with bishop. hahaa!! another family invited us but we don`t have time! here they celebrate the 24th.

Oh i also ate my first nacatamale. Its like a tamale but bigger...a bit more moist and has chicken in it. It`s good. ;) 

well, overall a great week. And here comes another great one! I love you all!!! May the lord be with you!

love,
hermana chase

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Still with a mini missionary! And we see a volcano


Family and friends…
Well I have hit my half way mark. Yep. Haha. Crazy right? 9 months. So it looks like transfers are the 3rd of September which is when I will be going home. I will just miss my birthday. So I have decided to wait and celebrate my bday until I get home. ;) haha. Sounds perfect to me!
So I left my notebook in the house of what I wanted to tell you about my week…I hate when that happens…anyways…my stories will be a bit out of order.
So first of all…I am with another companion. Miriam´s mom came down from El Salvador and told her they were leaving Sunday to go to el Salvador por miriams passport. So…Miriam was going to leave Saturday morning…so we needed someone new Friday night. I called our zone leaders to ask what we could do…and I will admit I cried a bit when I got off the phone. I was just so frustrated…I was just being shoved from one missionary to another…and not just missionaries, but jovenes…(young people, not missionaries)  I don´t know if you have ever taught with someone who isn’t a missionary but it is not the same. Now try living with them for a period of time. Its hard. I was doing everything. The only thing they really do is contact. Teaching…no. Planning…no. This whole change I have felt so tired and stressed, and actually angry. I didn`t understand why they didn’t take someone out of a trio and put them with me. I didn`t understand why I had so many companions…So finally that same night they found Nayalih…I did divisions with her once when hermana butler was still here. So since about Saturday morning I have been with her… The night she came when Miriam was still here  I had felt like I had lost it. I ended up talking to my old companion and people from my other area. They gave me a lot of advice. They told me that obviously the Lord has a lot of faith in me and trusts me a  lot to be in charge basically of one area by myself. That I just need to be happy. That I have 4 days left…and I need to just laugh and smile at everything. They helped me a lot. We talked for about more than one hour and that night when I went to bed I felt a lot better. So with Nayalih I have been trying to be more happy. And it´s been good with her. Better than the other times. She at least shares her feelings more in the lessons. Doesn`t teach but talks more than the other missionary. We find out tomorrow who is training and who is going to have changes. So I know I will get a new companion…well I hope I do. Haha.
So our investigator G____…I don`t remember if I told you…so she is awesome. One day we went and I forgot that she had promised to say the prayer. So the first thing she says is, `should I say the opening or closing prayer? Is it okay if I say the closing because I am nervous.`   I had totally forgotten so of course I was so happy!!! She also read the whole chapter we left in the book of mormon. Then she tells us that the lady she sometimes buys coffee from asks her if she is going to buy some. G____ told her, `no. coffee is bad for me now.`   haha! And she is only 13! She is awesome! Then one time we went to visit her and there was a girl in her house drinking coffee. She tells the girl, `you know coffee is bad for you.` and then she looks at me!!! Haha. I loved it! She also moved her baptism date up to her bday. Haha
Our other investigator T____ cried again. She is worried that when she gets home her family won’t accept her. They are evangelicals. So we spent most of the lesson reassuring her. But my goal is to find a scripture for her to help.
Sunday we went for investigators…and nobody!!! So we figured okay…we know G___ and E___ will go. We get to church and it starts…and they aren´t there. Well in order for G___ to get baptized Saturday she has to come to church this Sunday. So after we took the sacrament we decided to leave to see why she didn’t come. She lives with members. So we went and there she was watching tv. So her story is this…she doesn`t know where her parents are…she lives with these people who are members. So the lady tells us she got up at 7 and had things to do and that they are going to Managua in about 30 minutes after she showers…blah blah. I asked if gabriella could go to church with us at least for one hour…but she said there is nobody here to watch her so she has to go with them. I was so upset.  I didn’t show it. But the member knows how important it is that she goes to church this Sunday…we asked if G___ could go to the Christmas devotional that night at 7…she said yes if they were back in time. So we left to go back to church and there was e___!!! So we had one investigator!!!
Then we decided to invite people to the devotional. We went by O___ and he said he would go. He said the reason he hasn’t gone to church with us is fear of what the people will say and think. So we told him what time we would go by. When it was time we went for G___…she was home. Turns out they didn’t go to Managua…ya. Anyway we took her to go get O___. We get there and he doesn`t answer. G___ said she saw him shake his finger no through the hole. So we left for other people…but they weren`t home. We returned back for O___ and this time his door was open. He says, `oh my son is  at a bday party and it wouldn´t be good If I left him. My dad wasn’t a great dad, and I want to be a good dad…´ blah blah. I told him he could be a good example for his son and actually go to church and show him that you want to change and be better…cuz that is what he always tells us…he stared at me…and then blah blah came out of his mouth. He didn`t go. The next appointment I am going to tell him straight up. And if possible bring bishop. He always has excuses.
The devotional was good. I am sure you guys saw it. The music was beautiful. Which Is what I was looking forward to.  Haha
Today for pday we went to the VOLCANO!!! As a zone!!! It was okay.

Well next week I will let you know what happens with changes. Something I have realized in these nine months. The Lord really does know us better than we know ourselves. He knows what we need to get to our potential. Even if we don’t know. And  I have realized even more that He loves us. That he trusts us. That he is always there for us…even in our darkest moments. I know we are children of God. That Christ suffered for us. That he can help us. That this is the true church. I love you all!!!
Love, Hermana Chase

Monday, December 2, 2013

mini missionary, still no water and an update on investigators


So I was with a trio for one day. haha. at night they slept before i did...well there are only two beds...one had told me i could sleep with one of them but they never told me who. So I ended up sleeping on the floor. I woke up a bit later and was like whoa why is my leg wet...I look and realized it was from the fridge. it was leaking. haha. So i ended moving and sleeping on the other side of the room. in the morning they were like hermana chase! why are you sleeping on the floor! are you crazy?! you should have just pushed me over! haha. 

anyway tuesday I got my new comp..a mini missionary. It is someone who is preparing to go on a mission. She was hermana butlers comp for a bit when her foot was hurt. Anyway, we got lost a bit the first day...I am still learning the area. haha. 
The ward here is good. Every week we meet with the bishop and some leaders and we go over our investigators and who we want to visit with us. I told bishop i want a list of the less active young kids and the members so i can visit and get to know people. 

Being with a mini missionary I have spent a ton of money. Buying her dinner, and  such since she doesn´t have money, I feel bad so i tend to buy things for her. Like she wanted to buy a pen. I Said i could buy it for her...it was like 25 cents. So then the lady was like or there is this...and she shows us a package of pens. My comp looks at me and is like... hermana? I said okay its fine. haha. it was 80 cordobas. still cheap... but still. I am with the mini missionary until changes next week.

So we have an investigator...remember the one with the machete...well he is being ridiculous. he says he is about to leave but was waiting for us to come so he could tell us...when we didnt even have an appointment with him...and he hasn’t gone to church...

We have 2 baptisms for the 14!!! E______l was for the 7th but his family wont be here so he said the 14th...which works out because...

our other investigator a young girl will be baptizeed that day too. We went to teach her and after we sang the song she goes, ´should i say the opening or closing prayer...how about closing because i am a bit nervous...´ I had totally forgotten that we shook hands that she would pray the next time....she is amazing!!! Then after the lesson she tells us she wants to change her baptism date from the 28th to the 14th...its her bday. well i am not going to say no!!! haha. It was a great lesson with her. The only thing is that she doesn’t know where her parents are. Doesn’t talk to them. She lives with a member. So we have to figure that out. 

Also with T____...she has a baptism date for the 21 i believe it is. Anyway, we went one day with the elders because I forgot how to get there...she had prayed before but this time was different...i could barely hear her...and i thought...oh great...its like the other people who mumble their prayers when others pray out loud...what is she doing...but after the prayer i look up and she was crying. She knows the church is true. she knows it. her fear is that when she goes back to costa rica that the missionaries wont visit, that the church is far, and her family arent members...they are evangelical. It was a good moment. 

We also put a baptism date with another lady who the missionaries when she lived in managua contacted. She had been to church once, but then came here. 

For thanksgiving we met as a zone and had dinner. chicken, salad, fruit, bread, mashed potatoes, and soda. oh and corn. freaking good!!! haha. thanks president russell! 

I have gotten my christmas packages!!! I am excited. I Cant wait to open them! 

we ended up changing houses...the room is a lot bigger and we have 4 rocking chairs! haha. the funny thing is that all the elders helped us move stuff and then one goes...you guys dont have a sink. WHAT!?! we look and none of us had realized that before! haha. yep- so no sink. also we dont have water every other day. so we bought a big trash can to fill with water..only we dont have a handle on our shower yet so we cant use water...so our neighbors who are members fill up small buckets for us. haha. 

being with a mini missionary is hard. i feel like i teach everything... i had to call a missionary for advice who had a mini missionary before. I felt stressed. I feel a bit better now. Today I told my companion who she needed to study for...and to always keep their names in mind while she studies...we did practices together to contact people...using the phamplets...and i put a goal with her...to contact one person today using the phamplets and teaching one principle. I don`t know why i have a mini missionary but i know it is for a reason. 
today for pday we went to a small market to look at nicaragua stuff. Oh i bought shoes! mine were dead...there is a payless here. i bought a dress for someone, and some arch supports for my shoes because my feet feel like glass.
anyway, i am learning that there is apparently a lot the lord wants me to learn...i feel like if i go along with it and look for what i can learn in every moment, i will come back a much better person and follower of christ. i love you all!

love,
hermana chase