Monday, December 29, 2014

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Dearest Familia!

I talked to you on Christmas so I don´t think I need to write yáll today. Have a great week!

Just kidding...I know mom would kill me. So here´s a little letter. 

So this week we went to visit some people with a member, Hermana Adela. Well they have just installed the door to their house and they are rebuilding their house. We came back and she unlocked the bottom part but her daughter had locked the top part, so she didn´t have the key and couldn´t get inside.

Mission Christmas Party

Well...after analyzing and observing the situation I noticed a little opening above her door frame that I felt like would be easy to crawl into and over and unlock her door. I was in a skirt, but at least a long and stretchy one, and that didn´t seem to be a limiting factor. So sure enough I told her to just hold on a second, I grabbed a little stepping ladder nearby, climbed up and then pulled myself up and through and dropped myself over to the other side to unlock the door. She laughed and just said, "Oh Hermana Wright, usted no tiene limites, verdad?" (you have no limits, really or basically...is there anything you can't do?)

I was happy to at least be able to help her in that situation so she wasn´t stuck outside her house for hours.

 This week we had our mission Christmas party. It was actually really fun! We had a talent show, we watched some youtube christmas videos that have been famous in this time, and then played a couple christmas games with little packages. Hermana Spjut is so great!

On Christmas morning Hermana Evans and I got up and opened presents. Yep, you heard me right, we opened presents.




Hermana Evans brought about 5 packages in her suitcases from her mom for Christmas. So she gave me like 3 big packages. I was like, "wait what?". All I gave her was a little baby package (my resources were limited ha). But seriously we opened gifts and I got about 5 new outfits, and a million necklaces and earrings. I felt so spoiled. I felt so weird. It was so strange and foreign. I was seriously in awe.

It didn´t feel like I should be opening presents.
I didn´t feel like a missionary for a little bit. It was just strange. I mean don´t get me wrong, it was great! But just strange ha. I wasn´t quite sure how to handle it.


Matching stockings and PJ's


Aside from that, this week has been good, but I will be grateful when the holidays are over and we can be back to a "normal" schedule so members can help us visit and we can go with people more. 

This week in my personal study I read some good conference talks, but one that I really liked is the one from Elder Lynn G. Robbins called "Which Way Do You Face?" 
I absolutely love this because it helps us put into perspective our behavior and why we are doing something we are doing...to please God or to please man. That is why our society is so crazy these days, because we are all trying to please each other and forgetting about the most important. But two of my favorite parts are when he says, "Decisions of character are made by remembering the right order of the first and second great commandments" and when he also says, "The true badge of courage is overcoming the fear of men...courage is the form of every virtue at the testing point." I love these parts because depending on whether we choose to follow God or men will define our character and who we are. And I most definitely want to have a character that understands divinity and the importance of serving God before all others. I don´t know, maybe read it again and enjoy.

Love you lots. Thanks for your love and support and all that you do for me. 

Love,

Hermana Wright

Monday, December 22, 2014

Feliz Navidad!!

Querido Familia,

Feliz Navidad!! (casi) (almost)

I hope the jingle bells and Christmas caroling are treating yáll well. I´m a missionary (in case you didn´t know that), and I honestly love Christmas on the mission, even though it´s very different than at home. But to be a little honest knowing that Christmas is this week just stresses me out a little bit because it means we have less time to visit and get all the things done that we need to as a result of Christmas activities, people rejecting us for the holidays, and time to talk to our families :) ...but I guess that´s just part of the mission ha. 

Picture compliments of Sister Evans.
 The other day we had two dogs attack us. I took off my backpack to defend myself and one of them bit and attacked my backpack. I left my backpack and backed up a little bit to let them know we were leaving. They finally backed off and went back inside. Saved by the back pack once again on the mission. Bummer that I learned the back pack trick after I got bit the first time in Juayua ha. But it´s definitely come in handy. My poor companion was terrified...frozen...her first dog experience. My fiftieth. Chuchos (mongrel or mutt) are the worst.

So this week has had some ups and downs. Maritza had her interview on Tuesday for her baptism. We weren´t sure if she was going to go through with it because of her mom and everything. Downside. But after the interview she was animated and excited and said she was going to do it. Upside. Then she starting cutting cafe (coffee) and we couldn´t meet with her all week. (The area they live in is full of coffee plantations and that's what everyone does for work.) Downside. Then we were able to meet with her finally Saturday night. She told us that she didn´t think she was going to go through with it until her mom gave her permission. Downside. Then we read some scriptures about faith and the trial of her faith, taught her about the temple, and she asked us if she could get baptized Sunday morning early so that she could go without her mom knowing. Upside. We planned the whole thing last minute Saturday night to let the members know and make sure it was all good for Sunday morning. Upside. We got the pila (baptismal font) filled up and everything ready Sunday morning. Upside. Maritza didn´t show up. Downside. We went to look for her, only her mom answered and said that she was sick. Downer. Then we didn´t have any investigators in church. Nor did we have any last week. Ugh. 

My first baptism where my investigator didn´t come. I was hoping to never have one of those runaway baptisms. Super chafa. 

But we´re working with her this week to be able to be baptized as she really does just have this huge, burning desire inside.

Looking for ways to improve and be better this week. We clearly need to improve algo porque lo que hicimos esta semana no sirvio, pero esta bien. Alli estamos, mejorando y emocionadas por una nueva semana. (something because what we did this week didn't serve us well. But we are improving and so excited for a new week.) The longer she is there the more spanglish we get in the letters.  :)

This week I read some of the general conference talks from the recent general conference as we just got our magazines last week (finally!). I haven´t read all of them, only a few this week, but one that I really liked this week was the one that´s called "A Testimony of Truth and Light" )or something like that ha). It´s from Presidente Uchtdorf. I love it because it talks about how there´s so much confusion and ideas, but we forget sometimes about God and His opinion. I think in today´s world the word "truth" has been skewed and people have forgotten what "truth" actually means. Something that is true, is constant, and unchanging, and it doesn´t matter what everyone else thinks or what the trends are, it doesn´t change. Here in El Salvador there are a million churches and everyone says, "Jesucristo es la verdad, El es la verdad, tengo la verdad porque creo en El." (Jesus Christ is the truth, He is the truth, so I have the truth because I believe in Him.) But then we look around and we see a million different ideas and churches and doctrines and if we think about who God is, that He is unchanging, that He is most powerful and will guide us. If we understand that, we understand that it is impossible for every single church to be true, as everyone teaches something a little different, and God would not guide each different church in a different way. If He did that, He would cease to be God. But He doesn´t do that. Instead He guides His church, not the church of a man, but His church, and He guides it through a living prophet that He has called and through revelation. Presidente Uchtdorf then explains that if we really have a desire to know the truth, the truth that is everlasting and never changing, the truth that comes only from God, then we can know it. We just have to do our part, pray, read, and have a real desire and real intent. If we do that we will know the truth of all things. And that promise is huge from God. It´s huge. He is willing to communicate with each one of us very personally, and to help each one of us find the truth,t he truth that He wants us to know. We just have to do our part. 

So there´s my thoughts and why I love that talk. And I invite yáll to read it again or those of you to read it who haven´t read it, and then pray and ask God, and if you do it, with a sincere heart and real intent, He will answer. And that I know because I have witnessed it myself, experienced it myself, and seen it time and time again. God is real. He does answer prayers, and He will guide us, but we just have to be willing to let Him. 

Fire roasting Christmas
activity

 Aside from that we should have hot water installed today. We shall see. But this week luckily it wasn´t as frigid cold as the weeks before. So we were grateful for that. 

I will talk to you all this week on Christmas...so I guess we can talk more than. 

Love you lots and lots. 

Love,

Hermana Wright

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/receiving-a-testimony-of-light-and-truth?lang=eng 

Monday, December 15, 2014

consecration brings power...

Familia!

Well...still no hot water to shower. But...we did start heating water up on the stove and mixing it in a big bucket to shower out of the bucket. A million times better. Now I don´t want to cry every time I have to shower ha.

"Our tree...it's so cute!"

 This week we ran into some desafios (challenges) with Maritza as she´s supposed to be baptized this coming weekend. Her mom is against her being baptized. Her mom said that she can go to church and the activities and everything but that she can´t be baptized in the church. Maritza wants it with all of her heart. She said, "I can go to church, but if I don´t get baptized 
I´m not doing anything." She knows that it´s what God wants and that it´s true. Her mom wants her to be baptized in her evangelica church instead of the "mormon" church. She´s 21 years old and has a kid, so she doesn´t need permission from her mom necessarily, but they all live together and so she´s worried about what will happen if she goes through with it. We´re trying to help her increase her faith and trust in God, knowing that this is the best thing for her. To be continued next week...

Sister Evans paragraph on Maritza:  "Also, in my area here in Los Naranjos one of our investigators, Maritza is preparing to be baptized this weekend!! We are so excited for her!! It is amazing to see how this gospel can bring so much happiness and hope into people's lives. Whenever we read the Book of Mormon with her she is so happy because she always finds answers to her questions and finds peace when days are hard. She is the only one in her family that will accept this gospel right now. Her mom does not want her to get baptized and this has been really hard for her. However, we experienced a little miracle while teaching her. One night before we taught her, she had a really hard day with her mom and her mom was pretty upset.  She said that before we came she prayed that we would not talk specifically about her baptism, because her mom  would be even more angry. That night during the lesson, her mom was standing next to us and listening intently to the lesson. We had plans to ask her specific questions about her baptism but we felt prompted to just talk about the Book of Mormon, so we read a chapter with her in Mormon 9 about miracles and faith. Mormon 9:21: Behold, I say unto you that whoso believeth in Christ, doubting nothing, whatsoever he shall ask the Father in the name of Christ it shall be granted him, and this promise is unto all, even unto the ends of the earth. After the lesson she was so grateful and her faith was strengthened. We are going to continue to pray for her and help her. SHe has a strong desire to be baptized, and we have hope that we will still have a baptism this weekend!" 

 This week I was able to do interchanges with Hermana Najera (as she´s our leader in this area) so that was really fun to be with my trainer again for one day. 
"Armadillo anyone...delicious!?"

And she told me a story that was great to hear...

She went on interchanges to Orquideas one day and was able to see our fruits. Here´s the background story...one day about a year ago we saw a man who was throwing water out of a hole on the street to clean up so we offered to help him. We stopped and just helped him by serving him and chatted with him a little bit as we helped throw out all the dirty water onto the street. He told us we could return and teach him. We tried going back about 5 times and never found him again. I even tried going back after Hermana Najera left and never found him.

Well fast forward to an interchange Hermana Najera had in our area a couple months ago and they passed by this man´s house. He was outside and he yelled at her and said, "Hey Hermana Najera..." and so she went to say hi. Long story short, he told her that he remembered her and her companion, Hermana Wright, and that he will never forget that day when we helped him. He was sad that we never returned and she explained how we returned varias veces (several times) but never found him. He said that he was so touched by that day when we helped him and that it left an impression on him and he will forever remember our names. The hermanas are now teaching him. 

I feel bad that I don´t even remember his name. But it made me really happy to hear that and realize that ningun esfuerzo (no effort) is in vain and that we are making a difference, even though we often don´t see all the fruits. 

Little things like that really give us mas animo como misioneras para seguir adelante (more encouragement as missionaries to go ahead) and keep working. It was really great to hear that.

Aside from that, this week I studied a little more about consecration and what the means and how to be more consecrated. I remembered the quote that Melinda always has in all of her emails, that says something like, "the day obedience becomes a desire and not a burden is the day you gain power." And it´s so true. I learned more about how when we consecrate our time and ourselves to the Lord, we receive power. And that is my goal.

Hope you have a glorious week getting your last minute Christmas gifts! 

Love,
Hermana Wright


-fire night lesson

Monday, December 8, 2014

another week...and it´s still cold

Familia!

Hello again. Hope all is going well for yáll back home. That you´re finding your gifts for loved ones, enjoying the craziness and business of the holiday seasons, and hopefully some nice fresh powder to ski on while you´re at it. 
"Home sweet home!"


Things here in Los Naranjos are actually...well quite cold...so we´re feeling like we´re getting in the holiday season by drinking hot chocolate each night. Go fight win. Still have a freezing ice cold shower...but we spent a little money and should have hot water by this week...so Merry Christmas to us! (hopefully) (Please pray that their branch president who is supposed to install what they bought will actually take time and do it. Thanks!  Unfortunately they don't have heat because their landlord says they can't use the fireplace...I guess it's in the contract.)

We put up some super cutesy decorations for Christmas and just made our apartment (I think she meant cabin) all homie (Thanks to Shelly Evans for the decorations) But I forgot to take pictures so you´ll have to wait until next week.
 
Thanks to Sister Evans
Also, before I forget, I sent you each your Christmas present via mail...aka the Christmas card I sent each of you...I figured I just better tell you now that that´s your Christmas present from me this year...just so there´s not any confusion later on when you don´t get an ipad from me :)
Coffee Fields all over our area.  


Huge miracle for the week:
Last Monday we put a fecha (baptismal date) with Maritza. I am shocked and amazed and stoked! God is so good. We haven´t even been in our area for a week and we already have a 


baptism date. That is nothing that we did. It is completely God and the spirit, but it was seriously a huge miracle. We had a really sweet lesson with her, as she has a strong desire to follow God and do His will. She was really hesitant at first, but then we used the calendar and I tried following the spirit and read Mosiah 18, where it talks about "What else impedes (what other obstacles might be in your way) you to get baptized?"...and it was perfect. My companion gave the greatest testimonio that just comes right from her heart and brings so much of the spirit. It was seriously so great. I just am so amazed and happy. And I am excited to be working and learning and growing. 

Beautiful Los Naranjos
"Here in El Salvador we are having an adventure, that is for sure! It is hard work but this work makes me so happy! I love having lessons with people when it is dark outside and we use our little flashlights to read the scriptures and sing a Christmas hymn. I look up at the stars and look at the surrounding mountains and I can feel the spirit so strong and I feel so much peace."  Sister Evans





God always does His part. Always! He never fails us. We just have to trust in Him more and have more faith. And He will come through.

The neighborhood


And Maritza is keeping our hope alive as we are working with her to be baptized in a couple weeks. She is so excited and loves every moment and is soaking it all up that is just gives us so much more hope and desire to keep working. 

Aside from that things are going well. Just keeping up in the work and doing our best. Hoping and watching for miracles. 

Love you all like crazy!

Love,
Hermana Wright


PS I feel like I write less and less in my journal as the time goes on because the mission life is more and more normal and I don´t know...less time. So sorry if my letters have gotten progressively more boring.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Danika's newbie trainee letter home...just because

First of all, I am so happy to announce that my trainer is the one and only... HERMANA WRIGHT!!! Wooo!!! I am so happy!! Seriously, Hermana Wright is an amazing trainer and I am learning so much from her!!! When we tell people that we are neighbors in Utah every one goes crazy and its so fun!!! We are having an adventure out here in El Salvador, that's for sure!! We are opening a new area called Las Naranjos! This area is way high up in the mountains, so at night it is so cold but it is so beautiful so it{s all good!!! It kind of reminds me of going camping back home in Utah! Hermana Wright and I live in this small little red cabin, up in the mountains, and are having an awesome adventure together! It is like nothing I ever expected! 

   This past week we have been working really hard to get to know the members and the area since we are opening the area. Here, they just have a really small branch so we are working hard to transform this into a ward. There is a lot of work to do, that is for sure but we are up for the challenge!! We just talk to everyone and ask for references from everyone!! We have to be brave, because this gospel is so important, people need to hear it! Hermana Wright is a great example to me! When we were on this crazy  bus she just got up and introduced us as the missionaries and we walked through this crowded bus and talked to everyone! I just love being able to talk to people and say that I am a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints!! There is definitely a special spirit here in the mission field!! I know that Jesus Christ, my Savior is with Hermana Wright and I every step of the way! I know that there are people here that need this gospel, we just have to work hard to find them!!! However, all of the people we have met here are so loving and nice!!! We have one investigator right now that we are trying to commit to baptism and she is just so sweet !! I am excited to see her growth in these next few weeks!! The people have so much gratitude even though they have so little, its amazing to see!! I can see the light of the Savior in their eyes and I just want to help them come to understand the truthfulness of this gospel! I can see that there is a lot of potential for this area!! 

   I am so excited to continue my work here in this area!! Its so different here in El salvador, but I haven't had to eat any crazy food yet, haha!! I will prob have to do that soon though, but I am up for it! Also, The language is coming along, I just need to keep working at it! I am enjoying learning spanish and I cant wait to be able to speak the language so I can help more people! I know that with my Savior I can do all things that are necessary for me to help the people. 

   I am so grateful for this gospel!! I know that the Savior of this World lives and that he will help us everyday if we will just turn to Him and always think of him. We are sons and daughters of  a Heavenly Father who has so much love for us all! I know that He wants the best for us and will help us to achieve all things that we need to achieve if we just believe! One of my favorite scriptures is 1 Nephi 1 verse 7 and it talks about how Christ can do all things according to his will for us if we just have faith! 

  Todo Esta bien!! I am happy!! 

Sister Evans

Just two alpine girls living in a cabin in the mountains of El Salvador...

Dearest Family!

This week has been full of so many changes. 

Well I`m not a sister training leader anymore and I am now training a newbie...fresh out of the MTC...and yes, that newbie is my neighbor from good old Alpine, Utah, Hermana Evans. Good times. So that is really great! She reminds me so much of her mom, Shelly...so cute.

After we took a picture with Presidente Spjut, he turned to me and said, "Hey, Hermana Wright, I don`t usually do something like this, so you two better go to work." Yes Presidente, we will. (Danika told us she asked the president if she could train Valerie a couple of weeks ago and all the President said to her was, "Sister Wright, be careful what you ask for.")

Aside from that we are opening a new area, so we are trying to get to know the members and the area and the old investigators from the hermanas in the past. So it`s going great. 

We are in a little tiny pueblo called los naranjos, that is in the mountains in El Salvador and part of Juayua. Which means...I am BACK in Juayua...after a year ago when I started my mission here. Seriously SO weird, but really SO great! (Aside from the cold). I bought a parka this last week and we are going to start using our fireplace at night. We live in a cute cabin that has a fireplace and a sweet rocking chair. It`s adorable. We`re going to decorate for la Navidad today. Oh...and the shower is literally ice water. Literally. 
Picture compliments of Sister Evans since
her computer let her send one picture.

Danika also said while emailing today, "it`s a little pueblo...GORGEOUS...but SO cold. I already bought a parka, so I`m good with that..yeah, it`s the coldest area in the mission and it`s in the mountains."

We are also part of a branch, not a ward, so there were about 30 people at church yesterday. So we are working to baptize and find those that are ready and waiting, but also to work to strengthen the branch and the members that are here so that they can strengthen this branch. Our branch president doesn`t even live in the area because there isn`t a priesthood here in the area who is able to be branch president, so that`s a little bit about the area. There area a LOT of evangelica churches, and the majority of the pastors preach against the mormons, and it`s also the season where everyone leaves to go cut coffee for work. So our new area comes with some challenges and some adventures, but we are working hard and know that we are going to have some success here. 

Aside from that, we are seeing miracles and praying hard. I am really excited to be here and to be working and to be a missionary. I love it. I am going to learn and grow a lot. It`s a little overwhelming to see the work and everythign and to be starting from nothing, but I know God will do His part and we will see miracles. 

I didn`t write my letter before hand, so sorry it`s kind of scrambled.

I tried sending pics but the computer didn`t work. Maybe next week :)

Love you lots!

Love,

Hermana Wright

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Sister Wright is training Sister Evans (across the street neighbor)!!

Dear Evans Family,

            We are happy to announce that your daughter, Hermana Evans, has safely arrived in our mission. The night of her arrival, we enjoyed getting to know her during dinner at the mission home, and we can tell that she is going to be a great missionary. We are grateful for the sacrifices you and your missionary have made that allow her to be here. We pray that our Lord Jesus Christ will pour out his blessings upon your family. We are very happy to have your daughter with us and we know she will bless the lives of many people here in the great country of El Salvador.

President & Sister Spjut, Sister Evans & Sister Wright
She has been assigned to the area of Los Naranjos 2 in the Juayúa Stake. Her companion is Hermana Wright from Utah, Estados Unidos.  She is a determined, hardworking missionary who is diligent in the Lord´s work. We expect to see great success from this companionship.

Sincerely,

President and Sister Spjut

Monday, November 24, 2014

new adventures ahead...

Querido Familia!

This week I walked past a lady that had a shirt with the Washington Capitol on it and a little paper that said, "I´m just a bill". It was the best! I immediately thought of that song and movie we watched as kids. Good times. Flash back to the past.

The best, or funniest, thing that happened to us was when we contacted a house and the lady came to the window and told us that she would be happy to receive the missionaries and to send the young men to her house. We asked her if we could go in and share a message with her, and she said no, that she will only accept men. She said, "But send some nice young men like you two, white, with green eyes." I was so surprised and not sure if I understood right. Then I asked her why and she said that no, she doesn´t accept hermanas in her house cause she doesn´t want to look "gay" and so she will only accept the men. We left that house and just started laughing so hard. Yep, that was real life. So funny.

Saturday we got to teach Edgar Perez, and he wanted us to teach him in english so we brought Hermano Orlando to come with us. He never asked us before because I was with Hermana Paredes, but now that we´re both gringas, he said that we have to teach him in english. It was so much fun teaching in English! I seriously loved it. And I felt like it was so powerful testifying in my native language. It was a really good lesson and also so much fun. One reason why I was hoping not to have changes.

But I do have changes.  I am going to train and open a new area...so, we´ll see what the future holds ahead. (This happens Wednesday...Valerie Evans arrives Tuesday and Danika has a one in five chance of training her).

Aside from that, this week I studied a whole lot more about the plan of salvation, where we came from, what our purpose here on the earth, and more depth about these details. I wish I had more time to share my thoughts. Fail blog. The time is never sufficient. But just know that God lives, that His plan is perfect, and that as we follow Him and try to do His will, we will return to live with Him. And while satan tries to destroy the plan of God, we have more power than him and it´s our choice to follow him or to follow god. So choose to follow God instead. 

Love you lots and lots! Hope yáll have a Happy Thanksgiving this week!

Love,
Hermana Wright


PS sorry, not time to send pics. But I still love yáll

Monday, November 17, 2014

Birthday week!

Querido Familia,

So this week I don´t have a lot of specific thoughts or long stories. Rather we saw two huge miracles this week that were the best birthday present from God ever. Dayana changed her job and her husband agreed to get married. God is really so good.



I got my two little birthday packages in the mail on Wednesday. That was such a great surprise! I absolutely LOVED the birthday sign. It was an amazing idea and the cutest!! That´s the perfect gift for a missionary. And for anyone actually. And thanks for the chocolate.Thanks for the package! And tell everyone else that participated thank you SO much! And that I LOVED it!! Seriously the best.

We had interchanges on Thursday and I was out of the area. We met up Friday morning to do interchanges again, so when I got back to the apartment my cute companion had hung up my sign that mom sent me and put balloons around. Also gave me a snickers cake (and by cake I mean snickers bars with candles in them). So that was fun.


I didn´t actually feel that old when I said I was turning 26....that is, until an Elder in my district was joking with me and said, "You´re turning 14 right?" and my response was, "Ha, yeah, something like that, just 14 plus 12"....and that´s the moment when I felt old....knowing that 14 plus 5 would be the age of this Elder. Good times.

It was a glorious day, I was working with Hermana Castro all day on interchanges and she is a gem, so that was a great day. 

Snickers Cake

But hands down the best birthday present ever was when we went to visit hermana Dayana. We didn´t have plans to visit with her, but our cita fell through and I thought of her so we called her and she was home so we went.......

I´m not sure if I´ve written about her or not. But I think so. quick summary is that her husband is a member, not active. She´s not a member but wants to be baptized and be a member con todo. But she´s a nurse and has to work on Sundays. And it´s like impossible to change her job and she´s asked a million times. 

Well we finally decided to fast together with some ward members, her and her husband, and the missionaries in the district, so we did that about 2 weeks ago....

So she opened the gate and let us in and I asked her how her day was, and she replied, "Tengo buena noticia." (I have good news). Immediately I froze. "Fui a San Salvador hoy" ella dijo. (I went to San Salvador today) I was stopped, waiting for the good news, and she paused and I told her, "digame digame!" (Tell me, tell me!) And she said that she was able to change her job and so she can go to church on sundays. I just wanted to cry. I had the biggest smile on my face and I was stoked. God is so good. He really does do His part...always. We just have to do ours. I was in so much shock all night. I didn´t even know what to share with her, I was at a loss at words. But ever so grateful and a huge testimony builder for her and for us and for everyone. 

I wish I could write more details about the story and miracle, but there´s just not time. The best part is her husband also agreed to get married and so we have a date with them for the 20th of December. I´m hoping I can come back for that one, as I´ve been visiting this family for 5 months now and I´ll probs have changes next week. But we´ll see. Just love them so much.

Well thanks for the million birthday wishes and cards and emails. I wish I had time to respond to them all, but I just don´t. But I really appreciated getting lots of mail and emails. It always means a lot. So tell everyone thank you lots and lots. 

And family, thanks for being the best! 

Love you lots!
Love,

Hermana Wright


"For your entertainment..."
"I may or may not have 3 pairs of colored crazy spandex pants. 
I love El Salvador."

Monday, November 10, 2014

A story, a baptism, and two moments to reflect...

Familia!

Another week bites the dust. 

This week in our Consejo de Lideres, Hermana Spjut asked us all a question when she shared with us. She said that her daughter who´s a missionary loves the work, she doesn´t want to go home and isn´t ready to be done. She then talked about how it´s hard, how we go without eating for hours and are hungry, we walk and walk and walk and our feet or legs hurt, we are exhausted physically from lack of sleep or just pure tiredness, the bugs and mosquitos attack us, people reject us daily, etc. But for some reason we get up the next day and do it all over again. So she asked us, "What is it that motivates you to get up each day and work in this great work as a missionary?"

"Just because it´s beautiful..."
 I have thought a little bit about that and something that an Elder said that I totally agree with, is I was thinking how much I would charge to do what I do each day as a missionary. How much money would someone have to pay me to be a missionary for a job? Well...the first time I thought, "They would have to pay me a whole lot!" But then I realized that I actually don´t think I could get paid sufficiently or enough to do what I do as a missionary each day. Honestly, it´s just not worth the money.

So if there´s not an amount of money that would be worth it, what is it that motivates me to get up and work as a missionary each day? Well, I think the biggest thing for me is seeing the changes in people. Watching the miraculous changes that happen in their lives, watching more light come into their eyes, watching their attitude change to want to follow God. So many changes that are so miraculous and I absolutely love being a part of it and watching it happen. And that is why every morning, I get up and am excited to have a new day to work in this work...because I would never do it for money, but doing it for the people and literally watching the gospel of Jesus Christ change people´s lives, that is what it is all worth, and the only payment we need.

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Story of the week: And the most eventful thing that happened today though was when a little child ran up to me and just shoved me. Literally. I stood there in shock. Then he ran back and shoved me again. And then a third time. I mean he´s like 10, so it didn´t hurt or anything, I think I was just way more in shock than anything. I don´t think I´ve ever had a small child shove me, especially one I don´t even know. Oh the life of a missionary. Good times.

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"Awkward mission pic where you can´t
touch them..."
Yesterday was Jonathon´s baptism. The baptism was really great and special, you could definitely feel the spirit. But the part that touched me the most is that Jonathon had chinkunguya (I don´t remember how you spell it), it started Sunday morning. Well for those that don´t know what that is, it´s like dengue but way worse. You get it from mosquitos and it´s been an epidemic this year in El Salvador (everyone has it!). It consists of horribly high fevers, aching bones and body, swollen and inflamed joints, and rash all over the body. It´s horrendous and everyone is getting it down here. Well, his dad told us that he told Jonathon that he might not be able to go to be baptized, but Jonathon said, "No way, 
I´m going." And even though he had this awful sickness that is totally a legit excuse, he didn´t let anything from stopping him to 1) go to church this morning, and 2) get baptized and follow Christ. That touched my heart. He is simple. And SUPER shy. But he really showed his grand faith and desire to follow Christ. He´s such a good kid.

Jonathon´s baptism
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Last night we went and visited a family that if I´m completely honest, I don´t really love them. I feel like I love the majority of people...but they are hard for me. They live in our area but go to another ward and they have just honestly treated me super feo just for the pure fact that I´m a missionary from this ward. I don´t know, they are just so ridiculously prideful and selfish and really just people I never want to be like. And the way they have and always treated me hasn´t been the best. So my companion knows them from when she was in their ward another time in her mission, so sometimes we go over there (sacrifices as companions ha). 

Well last night while we were with them and it was just awkward and they were so selfish with their comments and it was super fake and false...I had a million thoughts run through my head. Then I knew that I needed more love for them so I started praying in my mind for help to know how to love them, knowing I couldn´t do it on my own. And one of my thoughts was, "Ugh, I can´t love them, they´ve just treated me so poorly." And then God reprimanded me a little as I immediatly thought about the Atonement and I thought about Christ´s sacrifice. I thought about how horribly and awfully Christ was treated by some people and still continues to be rejected, mocked, scorned, and blasphemed, and despite all of that, He loves us perfectly. Yes, it´s easy to love those that treat us well, but to love your "enemies" is a whole other story. And I definitely have failed at that. How does Christ do it? How does God do it? So I don´t know how, but God and Jesus Christ love us perfectly and unconditionally. Unconditionally...meaning no matter what the circumstances. And while the Lord reprimanded me and taught me that while I have lots of love...it´s no where near the Savior´s love and I still have a long ways to go. I´m working on it,a nd praying for more love for those that are harder to love. It was a humbling moment.

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So...what´s been new in your lives? Hope all is well. 

Love you lots and lots!

Love,
Hermana Wright 


Monday, November 3, 2014

Happy Halloween!

Familia!

Happy Halloween! If you didn´t send me pictures this week of your Halloween costumes, I better get them next week. That´s all I have to say about that. 

Let´s see, what happened this week. I got some nice meds to take to help my arm not fall off from the bug bite. Good times.

She didn't say I couldn't post this.  
I got robbed on the bus again. Fail blog. Oh and me and my companion have officially turned into major gringas...since we´ve been together we´ve made grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup, we made homemade oreo cookies to celebrate halloween, chips and salsa, and just about any type of gringo food that we haven´t eaten in over a year. Good times. That´s just what happens when you get a gringa companion who just understands.

Aside from that, this week I completed 1 year on the mission. Yep, that´s right. What is this world coming to? Here are some thoughts from my journal as far as that goes:

'''''''''

Happy 1 year to me! It´s my one year mark in the mission today. Exactly one year ago I left my home in Alpine, Utah and drove to good old Provo to drop me off at the MTC for 2 weeks before heading to El Salvador. I remember my first couple days and weeks when I finally arrived in El Salvador and if I´m completely honest my thoughts consisted of the following, "Wow, what did I get myself into? 18 months is SO long...it´s never going to come to an end."

But I knew that I committed myself to serving the Lord. I came because I wanted to serve Him. I came because I knew that I had the truth and everyone else in the world deserves the chance to hear it as well and to have the blessings that I have. And I committed myself before the mission to lose myself and forget myself and focus on the people and the work and do everything I could to serve the best of my ability. And so I worked on doing that.

Well, now it´s 1 year later and I am in awe a little bit about that. The time has gone faster and faster as the days go by and I am ever so grateful for the remaining months that I have. And 1 year later my thoughts have changed drastically. Rather than thinking about how long the days are, I am thinking how I can get everything done that I need to in that day. Rather than thinking about all the cultural differences, I am thinking about the people and how we are all just the same in all the world. Rather than thinking about how tired or hungry I am, I am thinking about what God wants me to do and how I can be an instrument in His hands to help serve His children. I really truly love this work. It is a privilege and honor to be a part of it. And it is incredible to watch it move forward. I am grateful that I have 6 more months left on the mission, as I have so much more to learn and grow before I come home and have to figure out what to actually do with my life (yeah...just not thinking about that right now). Happy 1 year to me. 

'''''''''''''

Aside from that, my companion got super sick this week, high fevers, loss of appetite, etc. She was in bed Thursday, Friday, Saturday and most of Sunday. I was able to leave for a few hours each day to work with members, when I could find a member to stay with her, but the work was limited. She doesn´t have dengue or chinkunguya, so who knows. We´re going to do some more tests today to see what the status is. 

Aside from that, nothing too crazy. I love you all and praying for you lots. I know life is full of challenges and trials, but that God is always there to help us and guide us. Always. So trust in Him. 

Love you lots!

Love,
Hermana Wright


Monday, October 27, 2014

Not much of an update...

Familia!

A busy week.

Went to the temple tuesday as a zone. The best. Always. Mom, you´re so legit.


 Last monday we put up a christmas tree and christmas decorations and started listening to christmas music. Yep, that´s right. They don´t celebrate halloween or Thanksgiving here, so the next one on the list is good old Navidad. I´m loving it!

Funny story for the week. We were walking in the street the other day and an old lady sitting outside called to us and said, "Excuse me, excuse me please...can you tell me what month it is?" We responded, "Um...it´s october." And she said, "Oh okay, great, thanks, I just sometimes don´t remember, but I appreciate it." I hope I never reach that stage in life. 

We broke up with the Familia Rodriguez. So that was awkward. Break ups are the worst. In all forms.

So Saturday night I got bit by something on my elbow. Yep, so it started to get a little swollen at night so I took an allergy pill. Well, yesterday morning the bug bite was so much bigger. Like HUGE. And it was all swollen and hot and red and it was hard inside. Well as the day went on it got bigger and tonight it´s about mid forearm to about mid bicep in redness and swollenness. I called Hermana Amone, she told me I might have to get an injection in my bum tomorrow. That made me panic a little. We laughed pretty hard. Update to come next week.

I also got my coin purse stollen this week, it only had 9 dollars in it so not a big deal at all...but that may or may not have been all the money I had left for this month though. Bummer. We contacted a bus, and by the time we got off, it wasn´t in the outside pocket of my backpack like it usually is. Fail blog.


So...aside from that, we saw some good miracles this week, but don´t have time to write them. Sorry friends. I´ll write more next week. 

But I just want you all to know that I know that God is real. I know that this life is full of hardships and obstacles and difficulties. That is true. And it´s not easy sometimes. Or oftentimes. And while sometimes it might seem like God isn´t there or isn´t helping us...He actually is there. We just don´t always understand it unfortunately. Turn to Him. Trust in Him, even when it seems impossible. 

Love you all!
Love,

Hermana Wright

Monday, October 20, 2014

Changes...

Querido Familia,

This week has been full of changes. And has felt pretty long as a result. But it´s going well.


 I ended up staying in my area. A big shocker for me since I have almost 5 months here, but I´m happy. Presidente called me before changes and told me I was going to get a new leader as a companion so to help her and he said that this will probs be my last change as a sister training leader since I´ve been in the role for almost 9 months now and other sisters need the chance. He told me there´s a good chance that I will get to train starting next change. Know what that means? I have a good chance to train Valerie Evans since she comes next change. That would be legit. We´ll see what God wants. 

My new companion is gringa...Hermana Cutler. We actually came on the mission in the same group, and we sat next to each other in the bus from the airport to the house. We bonded and talked about how it would be cool if we were companions one day. Well, here we are. Crazy. But having a gringa companion is so different. First, because we can´t speak english or spanish...so we often speak in spanglish. It´s pretty awesome, but my vocab is going to be so messed up when i come home haha. And we get a whole lot more cat calls and creepy men with 2 gringas. But always an adventure.

Hermana Cutler

Changes are always hard after a really good companion. Hermana Cutler is really great and I´ve learned so much already from her. But since I´ve been here so much longer, I´ve had so many experiences and seen growth and change in so many people, and my love for each of them is so strong. So it´s hard when someone else comes and doesn´t share that same connection or love or hasn´t seen all the change and growth to understand. But that´s normal in every change and I know it´s for the best. I have a great companion. We´re struggling a little with finding those that are prepared and ready and I had some moments of frustration this week for various reasons. But I´ve had some good conversations with God and learning more and more. Praying for more faith and energy to do the work I need to do. Feeling your prayers always. So thank you.

The other day two members stopped by in the evening to bring us cake. Well they opened the door and I started talking to them. We were having a conversation, some what, in the fact that Paty was responding with "uh huh, yep, etc." Well then my companion asked them, "Do you guys speak ingles?" And they responded no. To which I then asked, "Wait, was I speaking Ingles?" Yep. I was just speaking english to them but didn´t even notice because my companion understands when I speak english, spanish, or spanglish...so yeah...that was awkward. 

This week there was an earthquake in El Salvador. It wasn´t near our area, but we sure felt it monday night when we were planning there was a pretty strong temblor. It was pretty nuts. Lasted for about 25 seconds or so, which was pretty long, and everything was shaking. It´s surreal when the ground and everything literally starts shaking. When something that is usually so solid and firm and steady starts shaking and rocking...it´s quite the feeling. Makes one grateful to Dios for all that we have and our blessings. 

This week we had a special experience with la familia Anaya. I love this family so much. We went and visited them on Thursday and we were talking about baptism and that´s when the phone rang and Salvador (papa) answered in the lesson. Well as he was talking I heard something about how someone disappeared. I asked Jonathon (the son) what happened, as he was sitting next to me and he told me that his brother disappeared last night. What? I was in shock. Salvador got off the phone and told us that he didn´t want to tell us the news. He said he was going to tell us the news at the end of the lesson. Then he just started crying, and Carolina started crying as well. I got tears in my eyes and it broke my heart to hear that news. Apparently him and his girlfriend got in a fight the night before and he decided to walk home from Santa Ana Norte to here, to Nazareno, which is super far. Well he never showed up and they aren´t sure where he is or what happened. 


We immediately changed the topic to the atonement and my companion got the impression to talk about fasting. We brought up the fast topic and decided to start fasting together that evening at 6pm. So we started the fast. We called them at night, around 9pm and still didn´t know anything. 

The next morning we called around 745am His voice was happier and we asked him how he was doing. He replied, "I´m feeling really blessed." He then told us that they found his son and he was alright. He told us to pass by in the tarde to see them. He confirmed that we were still fasting and we said yes. 

We finished the fast extremely grateful for the miracles. We passed by for la familia Anaya around 6pm when it was time to finish the fast. We went in their kitchen and all kneeled down and said a prayer together to finish our fast. Salvador went and bought some pan and jugo to eat together. Then his son Luis Mario came in and we were talking with him for a little bit. He´s going through a tough time with all of this, so he was sitting there crying throughout our little conversation. We talked about prayer and relying on God and invited him to church. Salvador shared his testimony again (man this guy is just more and more converted each day) and he invited his son to go to church with Jonathon. It was really special to be able to finish the fast together and sit and talk for a few minutes. It was amazing to see us all come together in fasting together and see God work miracles as they found their son the next morning. But then how we all finished the fast in gratitude and praise for God. It was a pretty neat experience to be a part of and I am grateful for that. 

God is so good. It´s amazing. If only everyone could just realize that and see that...this world would be so much better.

I love you all so much. Praying always for you.

Love,

Hermana Wright


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Earthquake

5:47 PM
Dear families of missionaries in the El Salvador Santa Ana Mission,

You may be aware of the earthquake that occurred off the coast of El Salvador last night. While we felt it in Santa Ana, we have seen no damage. All the missionaries are safe and have been working as usual today.

Thank you for your prayers. We are pleased to work with your missionaries as they invite the wonderful people of El Salvador to come unto Christ.

Sincerely,

President Spjut


MSN NEWS SAN SALVADOR (Reuters) - 

A magnitude 7.3 earthquake struck late on Monday off the coast of El Salvador and Nicaragua and was felt across Central America, killing at least one person, but there were no immediate reports of major damage.

El Salvador's emergency services said a dozen homes in the department of Usulutan had been slightly damaged but that coastal areas appeared calm and the country's international airport was unaffected.
Wilfredo Salgado, mayor of the city of San Miguel in El Salvador, said on his Twitter account that a man was killed when an electricity post fell on him.

"It felt really powerful, suddenly the whole house started to move," said Xiomara Amaya, 30, who lives in Usulutan.

The quake struck 42 miles (67 km) west-southwest of Jiquilillo in Nicaragua and 174 km southeast of San Salvador, the U.S. Geological Survey said. It said the quake hit at a depth of about 25 miles (40 km).

Emergency services in Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala as well as in Panama said they had no early reports of damage or injuries. Nicaraguan presidential spokeswoman Rosario Murillo urged coastal residents to seek out higher land in case of a tsunami.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center at one point warned of possible tsunami waves in the region but then said there was no threat.


Monday, October 13, 2014

Flowers from a drunk...

Familia!

How´s it going? I hope yáll are doing well in the great US of A. Do you have your halloween costumes picked out yet? I better get some pics in a few weeks with those sweet costumes. 


Update, changes are wednesday. And I am pretty sure I will have changes. A missionary never can be sure...the only sure thing about changes is that you can never be sure. But I feel like I´m leaving, and my companion feels the same way. So I think that is what will happen. Hermana Paredes and I are sad to be separating. But we´ll be friends after the mission, so I´m not worried about not seeing her. We´ve worked like crazy these last two changes and have had some really great times together. We´ll see where I end up. There are two places I might go...Tazumal or Molino. So we´ll see where I end up. 

Man, but saying good bye and farewell to the people is the hardest. You come to love and care so much about them. You learn their secrets, their life stories, and share special times together as we work to be instruments in God´s hands, helping them learn about the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. And it´s incredible. Then to say adios pues all of a sudden...it´s hard. Man, it´s times like this when I don´t want the mission to end...because I think that farewell at the end of the mission will be the hardest. But enough thinking about that, I still have 7 more months.

"I love this family so much!"
(this is not Blanca's family)

 This week we taught Blanca Vasquez. The last time we taught her she told us that her son is a total drunk, and has been that way for the last 9 months...literally always drunk, he never stops. Well, today we got the opportunity to meet the famous William. It was quite memorable as we were trying to teach her, but he was constantly talking and mumbling and interupting. At one point he left the room and returned with roses for us. Yep, a drunken man gave us roses. I saved mine for memories sake. While there were some amusing moments with him, I really just felt bad for hermana Blanca. It made me really grateful for the commandments and that I don´t ever have to worry about that. 



So about 2 months ago I decided to make a box for my camera, so that I could hide my camera (camouflauge) and take pictures in the super sketchy parts of my area. (oops, I mean, Dad don´t worry, everywhere we go is completely safe and free from harm). Well this week was the first time I used it. The best. We got some good fotos. But we´re going to try using it more today. 

Whenever changes come around, I see a little bit more of the impact I have had on the area. Really it´s not me, because I don´t do much. But the impact God is able to have, by using me as an instrument. 

We visited with a parcial family (part members part non-members) yesterday and they knew that we were going to have changes this week (and we can´t visit with them again until friday), so they were really sincere and thanked us for coming into their home and for our love and everything that we do. The wife said the closing prayer and struggled to finish and get through the prayer as she started crying. The husband, who has been a little tough to help change and repent, thanked God in his prayer for us and our visits, something that we never expected. And while we are going to continue visiting them, this visit with them touched my heart and made me realize that we really don´t know the impact that we have on people. And while I have had various experiences in my life, and I like to think that I´ve made an impact on the lives of various others before the mission, nothing compares to the mission. Because as a missionary, complete strangers let us in their homes. They share their secrets and true feelings with us from the first visit. They confide and trust in us. And we feel the spirit and grow closer to God through various experiences together. And it all happens in just a couple short visits each week. Very little time to be honest. But yet somehow, God uses us to show His grand love and touch the lives of His children in such a short amount of time. And you can feel it´s power. And it is such a privilege to be a part of it.  

"Long story. Outlets fail and I live in El Salvador haha, 
but basically the power is the problem."



This church is true. I love this work. I am grateful for the chance to serve. And I am working to do my best and be the best missionary I can while I am here. 

Love yáll a whole lot!

Love,

Hermana Wright








PS  We just got news about cambios...

I don´t have changes. Hermana Paredes is leaving though. Ahh...I´m excited to keep working here, but sad to be separated from her.

Love you! Have a great week! I´m out




Share the truth!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

YOLO comes to the mission

Familia!

Que tal? I hope everyone had an enjoyable conference weekend, filled with delicious home made breakfast, sitting on the couch in sweats, and maybe a nice nap in between sessions. 

I loved conference! Obviously. I have so many talks that I loved. But it was really interesting how almost every speaker talked about or mentioned the importance of following the prophet. This world is crazy, there´s so much sadness and wickedness, and we need to always be sure we are on the right path. Well the best way to do that is to follow the living prophet of the Lord. His name is Thomas S. Monson. He´s a prophet like Moses or Abraham. He receives revelation directly from JesusChrist himself, to help guide us and lead us back to Him. So follow the prophet. Don´t let pride or other things let you stray from the Lord. If you follow the prophet, it´s sure that you will be on the right path. 

These were some of my favorite talks: Lynn G. Robbins, Elder Jorg Klebingnat, Presidente Uchtdorf, Elder Bednar, Presidente Monson....ahh, so many. 

Here´s a link for those who don´t know what conference is, or might want to watch (the talks will be written and posted within a week or so):

Quote of the day. Jonathon came to general conference this morning. We gave him a piece of paper to take notes. He just doodled instead. He´s 15. At the end of conference we asked him what he thought, and his response was, "algo aburrido.(a little boring) Ha. Well at least he´s honest. I felt the same way when I was a teenager. So it´s normal.

This last week we had our meeting as leaders with Presidente Spjut. I learned a whole lot. But I think what really impacted me was when we talked about YOLO. Yep, that´s right, YOLO has now come to the mission. You Only Live Once. 

Well If you read in D&C 58:16, the assistents decided to change it to YOMO, "You Only Mission Once". And while it´s silly, and amusing in so many ways, it´s so true. This is the only time in my life I will get to be a fulltime missionary for Jesus Christ. I won´t get up and preach the gospel in front of a bus full of people when I go home. I won´t be able to just talk to a million random people in the street and ask for their direction (address) to go visit. I only have one mission, and it´s here and it´s now. And I want and am going to give my all the best that I can for these last short 7 months. 

Love you all to death. This church is true. Live it. Follow the Prophet. Don´t forget to pray. 

Love,

Hermana Wright