Hey family!! My new area is Magdalena! It is very close to the Mar (aka ocean) so it is very windy always cloudy and there is a virgin here that is HUGE!! she is called Magdalena del mar. Apparently there is technically only one Mary mother of Christ right? yet she is called different names depending on where her shrine is, so this virgin is about a third the size of the statue of liberty and she is above the beach and even has her HUGE rosary that sways in the ocean breeze. Very beautiful but wow I thought my other sector in Salamanca was big, THIS IS ENORMOUS!! WE get to walk for half an hour just to get to the church house. We don´t really have investigators because of the split of the sector with elders and it just so happens that all the investigators the sisters had before fell in the sector of the elders. So we are basically beginning anew in a new sector looking for people to teach. A bit rough but what an opportunity to look for the people God has prepared for us! We have really seen miracles when we really put in our work to find people. WE ran into a family who in three days feels like we have known them for months. They are really humble which is incredible because in the first day in my new area. I saw a McDonald's, a limousine, a city of apartment buildings with sixteen floors each and five or six rooms per floor (its basically a small city of tall buildings they have their own shopping center and hospital and everything!!) not to mentions gringos out the WAZOO! Its really weird to see white people (especially when i look in the mirror EEEP!) This new area has definitely been challenging cuz it is a VERY RICH AREA. Needless to say. We are working hard to have new people to teach and our little miracle family are really so sweet and knowing the gospel can change their lives just gives us so much faith and hope. Whoosh I am still adjusting to a new area and I cannot even believe that we have had the craziest things happen this week! The family we live above are on vacation and of course the water in the house stops working. We live on the third floor and it is pretty HUGE! but the stairs to get there are oooh boy very interesting to climb.....ba ha ha. very small and interesting. So thankfully a spigot in the garage works and we use buckets to carry all our water to the third floor to flush the toilet, wash the dishes, and bathe..(ah who bathes).. It is an adventure EVERY DAY!! It really is just like Snow white I got to this house and there was dirt everywhere and who knows what disorganization but I really love cleaning things fixing drapes and yes bringing the water up in buckets just like drawing water from a well!! WOOT! But we are really just learning to be happy and when I got the changes to go to Magdalena I just had this wonderful peace and the feeling that God needs me here. I don´t know why, but I just know that I am here for a specific reason to touch the lives that maybe I can only touch. All this opposition is to give me experience and get me ready for the rest of my life!! So always remember that our trials are for a reason and God has specifically prepared us for them! Have a great week! love you tons, Sister Atkisnon
Monday, July 23, 2012
A funny story. my companion and I are super worried about an investigator who was going to have his baptism this weekend but he has problems with word of wisdom. WE were so focused in his progression and how we can help him that we TOTALLY forgot about transfers!! WE had a long day and made a whole package of pasta and we ate the whole thing with garlic bread and were sleeping tranquilo and the phone rings about 11:30 at night. nos Espantamos! Who is calling us at this time of night!!! We answered and IT WAS TRANSFERS and leaders of zona! Oye!!! We were so sure we were both going to have a lot of time here in Salamanca because we are both very new and only have had six weeks here and with a new president we were hoping not a lot of things were going to change the first transfers, BOY WAS I WRONG!! So I am leaving my beloved Salamanca and as of now I have no idea where my new sector will be. WHOOSH! Not to mention an new companion. So far I have had a new companion for every transfer!
This week we really have had adventures. we were invited to a birthday party for a young going to be missionary (he is turning three) his mom did the house in balloon animals of rabbits (huge) a motorcycle, a bee, a panda,an octopus!! Just amazing and they had jello and popcorn and the BEST RICE pudding of my life with marzamora and we provided the games and I just love this family it will be so hard to leave them, but wow for a limited budget this mom works wonders for her kids!!
WE also had interviews with the president and his wife! They really are so special and caring for everyone! How wonderful their spirit is. We had a party today because our beloved leader of the zone is headed home. I have never seen a missionary with more Power than Elder B he will be a memb of the seventy one day! Mind blowing service and spirit and buen animos!
Hope you all are having a fabulous summer and I love you all! It is amazing how fast we come to love people we come to know. God puts people in our lives for a reason. Derick has a great testimony of this, when we are the most comfortable God yanks it all out from under us! When we are comfortable we aren't learning so I am going to be more taught and more refined by a new sector and zone and companion! How much I have learned and how much I still have to learn. God is slowly shaping me and preparing me for the rest of my life!
Love love love forever! HERMANA ATKINSON!
Monday, July 16, 2012
Buenas DIAS or is it tardes I am always confused with this..... but BIENVENIDOS A LA AGENDA DE UN MISSIONERA!! (Welcome to the agenda of missionaries). I am going to try to write my week moment for moment for everyone to get a feel for all the crazy stuff we got to do this week!
Monday. We had to move p day to Tuesday because we got to go to the temple! Yah! So Monday we went for an area that is VERY RICH to plan our invasion for Saturday...see Saturday.... this area is a thriving hive of Catholics and beautiful parks with virgins everywhere and a huge beautiful park with tons of roses and a statue of the pope! Where is my camera!! DOH!! We went with a member to know the houses of less actives. Then went running to the other extreme of our sector for an appointment with a investigator who when we got there, (half an hour walk) wasn't home. Ba ha ha ha. so is the work.
TUESDAY was day at the temple and WOOSH spiritual revitalization!! Just the pure love that we felt just walking within the outer gates was amazing! Then had a family home evening in the house of a recent convert. The grandma and her three grand-kids were baptized in may. They are so strong in the church and have amazing faith. The mom of the kids and the two youngest kids were there also and wow reminds me of family reunions, small kids running everywhere and everyone is talking and laughing and having a great time! and Camilla who has four years is pulling my hair and nose and jumping off the bed. This great family who is so humble and doesn't have much is always feeding us coca cola and piccarones and marzamora (which is like jam but the consistency of snot....)
Thursday: We got to teach a young man and his mom. he is very quiet and it is very funny cuz he is 30 something and still lives with his mom and his mom the whole lesson was you need to repent and wash your hair and don't put your shoes there and why this shirt and listen to these two young women because they are very good and very important and this message is true! WE could hardly believe our ears! She was very receptive and listened and READ The book of Mormon the whole introduction, and when Jose Smith saw angel Moroni, she is catholic but WOW she really is accepting the veracidad (truth)of the gospel and can really see the logic of what we are teaching and is amazing to actually have someone accept the gospel like this and read the book of Mormon with this kind of gusto!! Her questions are straight out of the GOLDEN INVESTIGATORS handbook....(disclaimer there really isn't an official golden investigators handbook....) dinner consisted of mac n cheese three days old at ten thirty at night right before we passed out in our beds ( and we all thought I slept like a rock before....BA ha ha that was practice)
FRIDAY!! was normal walking and talking with people lots of appointments lost this day too I have no idea what happened this week , but no one was there when they said they would be. Yet a miracle was that we ran into a young student who is studying hard and really wants to be baptized but doesn't have the time for the lessons but we had been looking for her for two weeks and finally have her cell phone. Woot!
Saturday: DUN DUN DUN DUN DUN!! Had our INVASION!! Basically all the other elders and sisters in our zone come to our area and knock doors for us. We get references! So in two hours we knocked doors with twelve people, ten missionaries and the Tovar brothers (ex missionaries). It was a bit stressful cuz no one was on time and a sister in the ward who came to help was really late and we had already started and she couldn't find a pair of missionaries to help....and she gave up some important things in her house to be there. oye I was just glad when it was over. But then we went to help out with a pollada.. ( POLLADA=basically a fundraiser like a bake sale but with chicken). So they make rich rich rich food with potatoes yams, lettuce sauces and the biggest piece of chicken in my life! I half expected it to BOK at me! Then people come and buy them and eat them and raise money for uniforms for their kids. WE had six missionaries five children the mom and the grandma all in one room and three people eating their polladas. All in one room screaming and eating and working hard to have the food done quick for all the people waiting of course the missionaries bought some for us and WOOSH so rich was the food! Then we went to work walking and delivering polladas and teacing for the rest of the day we can't even explain how tired we are but happy.
SUNDAY: WE had to bring our investigator who has his baptism this week to church we passed for his house at 8.30 but he said he had to get ready and eat breakfast and to pass back by in 40 minutes!! I said ten and really it ended up being twenty five. Oye but now he can have his baptism this Saturday if all goes well in his interview. Then the two young boys we baptized in may were moving houses and WOOT SERVICE AGAIN!!! We helped them move all their things to a new cleaner happier house of many colors bright green orange and bright blue! I Love this house! It was so fun and we got to know the mom and dad better! Then went to work contacting all the references we received from the invasion. not to mention it was the festival of the virgin maria in the street marginal and lots of music and people and of course the virgin... very interesting and cultural.
Got to run wow long one today love you tons! hermana Atkinson.
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
The work is a bit slow. I would have never thought in my life that I would have to teach the law of chastity or the word of wisdom to people twice my age and I am just a youngster...it's pretty funny but the work is moving slower than I would like but I think this next month my companion and I will begin to have great success and baptisms. Is it cooler there? YES!! holy cow!! like spring in Utah we leave the house in sweaters and coats and its warm and sunny, then the next day forget our sweaters and its not freezing but brisk! Never thought I would need a sweater in Peru!!
I introduced my companion to the wonders of mac n cheese (she is now hooked not to mention I showed her how to make french toast and she makes it every night now BA ha ha the influence of American culture ) and the gravy is whoosh! The best! I did find out that here they do have Quaker oatmeal but they pronounce it Coo A CUR. So I was definitely confused for the longest time until I bought Quaker oatmeal and realized what it was; not to mention their pronunciation of ALL English words are HORRENDUS my companion was looking for Ketchup the other day in the store and asked if i had seen where the kasup was......I was totally lost...what the HECK IS KASUP''' she found it and I said oh KATCHUP she said ya kasup.....no Ketchup,....companion no kasup....at times Spanish is so odd..
We had the opportunity to go to the temple today for p day (sorry for the day late letter but had to change our p day to Tuesday this week to go to the temple) and MAN I JUST LOVE THE temple and always I can feel the family so close there and how blessed we are to have the covenants and blessings of the temple with us always!! I am just so happy after the temple its kinda scary!! But wow to be able to go with our zone was just beautiful just like having our cup filled with fresh cool spirit juice!! Tell Mati Brock and Conner I love them and press forward with steadfastness in Christ having a perfect brightness of hope a love of god and all men!! Please send love to Alyssa and tell her I read her little card of 10 things for a successful missionary every day.
Love, Sister Atkinson
Monday, July 2, 2012
My new companion speaks some very interesting new words.... we were walking and looking for my new favorite kind of cheese queso fresco (once upon a time was in a soup we had for Natalie's wedding ooh so good) anyways looking for cheese and it came to pass that I was asking a question about the cheese and my companion said, ´munde¨and I thought she was talking about cheese.....but actually munde means"What" in Mexico. So I will soon be speaking like a Peruvian and una mexicana OJALA!!!
Last week for p-day we got to go to the catacombs in the central of Peru!! WOOT my life is fulfilled! The bones and the architecture are really cool, a whole ceiling of wooden puzzle pieces and a room full of old old books, but wow the spirit is definitely lacking in this place. it was interesting to learn about another religion., it was very pretty and I got to eat the BEST CURRO OF MY LIFE! Hot and sugary and filled with custard! oh baby we make good popcorn! And this week we had our final meeting with President Tyler and his wife! It was so spiritually recharging and wonderful! That day of proselyting was THE BEST!! WE were on fire and had the desire to teach everyone and WOW just the happiest day of my life! But as always a good day and a bad day, Sunday was stressful with hardly none of our investigators coming to church when we called them all that morning to be sure they remembered and somehow got lost on the way to the capilla (chapel)?? oye!! if I can be in a different country and a different language and can get to church SO CAN YOU!! for only one hour in your whole week! So a little frustrating but aumented by the opportunity to cook for the family Tovar. The parents are in Colombia with their son to meet his investigators of his mission! So we had spaghetti and they had never known garlic bread so i gratefully introduced them ,9 with fruit salad. woot awesome! thanks mom for teaching me so good! and HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!! 50 AND LOVING IT AND NOT LOOKING IT!! LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH HAVE A HAPPY INDEPENDANCE DAY AND EAT LOTS OF CAKE IN A CONE FOR ME!! LOVE SISTER ATKINSON.