- Jami Pond
- I am studying Psychology and Sociology at Utah Valley University, and working at a treatment center for troubled teens. I love life, being with people from all cultures, speaking Spanish, and traveling all over the world. I will never stop laughing, dancing, singing, enjoying, appreciating, and just being.
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
March 28th, 2011
Family and Friends!
First of all can I please let you all know that CONFERENCE is in like 6 days!!! I hope you are all getting pumped up and ready to go!!!! Like it talks about in Mosiah 2, when everyone in the town is setting up their tents and they get all prepared and ready to hear the prophet King Bejamin speak! Let us open our ears, our minds, and our hearts this week to prepare to hear the words of the living prophet of God on the earth today!!! Start thinking of some good questions to have ready to go, and get answered before Saturday!
So this week has been way good! First of all- the funny situations like always-
One night we had a noche day hogar (FHE) and lets be honest my Spanish is
still not perfect, and I was sitting next to Diego and he was helping me with my Spanish. I was trying to tell the hermana -a member- that I liked her shirt, and so I was like yelling......me gustta su ramera – well apparently it is REMERA, so and instead of saying I like your shirt to a member I was saying I like your whore....sooooo I definitely have realized I still have a ways to go on correcting and learning perfect Spanish.
Also we were knocking doors one day, and we got to this one house, and I went to start my contact, but right when they opened the door I had like tripped or had done something awkward and he ended up laughing and thought we were like jokes – haha - but it got us in the door anyway so its okay. So we sit down and start talking to this family and I just look on the table and there are all these Jesus books, and we realized that they are preachers from their church. So the whole time while we were trying to teach them, they would switch it up and try and teach us - it was out of control - then we gave them a Book of Mormon and we challenged them to read it and they bust out some Christian hope book and do the same- it was funny! We got invited to their prayer and study the bible night next Friday, so we will see how that goes..
Also one day we were in the ghetto, and I had to go to the bathroom SO bad, and our appointment wasn’t home, so we went to this other house where we thought we were friends with this girl, and we asked for her and she was like yelling at her husband not to let us in, and so I just asked him if I could just use the bathroom really quick and he let me in…...bad idea! The lady was MAD and like came in and was walking by my comp and ignoring her, and hit her with a block of wood when she walked by her- haha - I felt so bad - all this was happening when I was in the
bathroom - and so we like ran out of the house and my comp said we should not go to the neighborhood again, or she thinks the lady is going to like kill us.
ALSO -best part ever was we went to a baptism of some elders in our zone and it was suppose to be at 5 - the lady didn’t show up until like 730, and had ALL of these problems, and we truly didn’t even think it was going to go down, but we had an investigator there – the deaf friend of Diego - she is way cute - and then ALL of these little kids come to the church that we have taught before to play soccer and Diego
sits them down and like makes them watch the baptism, and finally when
it started the lady getting baptized was like HUGE, and she like wouldn’t even go under because she was afraid of water, and all the kids were SO loud, and it literally was out of control…. but in the end it all ended up working out, and everyone loved it. Such an adventure!
MIRACLES! Soooo, we have some great investigators right now! Eli is totally ready and could get baptized any day, but she always likes get scared the last minute and has tons of work and family problems so she is always giving excuses. But she really does want to get baptized, so we have been working with her a lot, and helping her get over her fears and doubts, and helping her develop more faith and confidence in God and in herself.
Aalso there is this family – it is a mom, Gladis and her 3 cute daughters, and they LOVE us and get emotional every time we come over, because she said she just feels so much peace and comfort when we teach and she knows its the truth and can make her family happy. Her mom is sick in the hospital, and had the nurses read
the Book of Mormon to her, and the pamphlets, and pretty much everyone in the hospital loved it! We are working with them a lot, and just trying to get them to church. We are hoping for a baptism for them after conference weekend!
Also there is Diego (a different Diego) and his cute wife and 3 kids- I love them! They just need to get married and my companion has worked a lot with the wife before, but one day we passed - and I just shared a little something and I actually thought they were members (inactives) - so I just said some little uplifting things and read out of the Book of Mormon - and he said he was in the other room when we came that day, and he heard us, and just felt so happy and peaceful and liked our message. So after we left he has been reading and praying and really wants to change his life, be a better dad, and have more love and unity in the family! We are so excited for them.
Also, there is Tina and Carla, but they are both living with someone, so they need to get married too, but Tina came to church, and they LOVE the Book of Mormon and they are reading and praying.
Also last night we passed for Diego’s house – (my best friend pretty much)
- who is about to go on his mission, and he is my idol. We wanted to talk about his
sister’s baptism because she is getting baptized before he leaves, but he wasn’t home, so we just ended up talking to his little brother, Gaston. He is inactive and 14 years old. I love him sooooo much, and I truly just look to him like my little brother, and it makes me sooo sad, because he is so inactive and doesn’t believe in ANYTHING and has no faith or beliefs. Last night we just sat him down and read some scriptures about faith, and truly I don’t think I have ever had such a powerful
lesson in my mission. We told him the story in Alma 5 about Alma’s son and his conversion - because Gaston said he wants to see God to believe anything is true-and we taught about how it was the feelings and power of the holy ghost that Alma felt in his heart to know the truth – not because he saw an angel. I just expressed with all my love and heart to this kid my testimony, and how I came to know of the truth of the church and told him my story, and the spirit was just SO intense! It
was definitely a tender mercy of the night.
Truly the mission is such a blessing! Every day we are seeing people change their lives and find the joy peace and happiness through Christ and the teachings of his gospel. I just LOVE the Book of Mormon and the power and role it has in the conversion process. You can find any answer in life that you are looking for if you read the Book of Mormon. I was reading the story in Alma 56, and I truly am just sooo inspired and impressed by their FIRE!!!, their faith, and love and desire, and COURAGE in themselves and in God! Why would we ever think we are inadequate or incapable to not receive the help of God in anything we do......I love when Helaman says that he has never seen such courage in anyone in his life. We need to put our trust in God and NOT DOUBT - and just go forward everyday with god by our side and he will be with us and help us. We truly can do anything with this kind of faith. I challenge anyone who reads this to open your Book of Mormon tonight
and read in Alma 56, and I promise you will be inspired beyond measure
and learn something new.
I hope everyone has a good week and know I am HAPPY and loving the mission and I am sooo excited for conference!!!!! Love you ALLLLLL – I think and pray for all of my family and friends often…..I miss you!!!!
Monday March 20th, 2011
Family and Friends!
I feel like I have been so weak with my emails lately…..I have just been so busy! But we have truly seen miracles here in my new area and I love my companion!
So funny awkward stories first - so this week we did intercambios with these other sister missionaries in a close area. Hermana Lopez from Buenos Aires came to my area, and it was honestly the most amazing day ever! She is such a solid missionary and has the most amazing testimony!!! We were hitting doors looking for people to teach and this one guy comes to the window to talk to us and he is PANTLESS...and I didn’t even notice until like after 5 minutes talking to him, and I like looked at my companion - soooo awkward - and we just walked away like crying laughing it was soooo funny……awk pantless encounters!
Also we were contacting this guy in his door and he was way good and way interested, and wanted to learn more about Joseph Smith, and my comp is like talking to him all about it, and his little dog like runs up to me and jumps INTO my skirt, and my skirt is stretchy and like pretty much pulls it all the way down; it was soooo awkward, and my comp was like trying not to laugh...yeah - way to ruin the spirit!
Also, we were helping the Relief Society set up for an activity, and they asked me to do the glasses of course - dumb me - like gets the smart idea, “hey this would look way cool if I stacked these”....MALO! So I am stacking like all these glasses and my comp is saying – don’t do it - and I was like, “Hey hermana, where is your faith?”
Right when I say that one small glass slips and ALL of them fall literally just like in the movies and the tower of glasses just goes crashing to the floor, as I was trying to like catch them...it was terrible...apparently my face was the best part. Me and my comp like cried and laughed together after, and lets just say the sisters told us they didn’t need anymore help after that...shoooot.
Also there is this poor area we work in - I call it trash land because the first time we were walking to it my comp literally pointed down this road of TRASH - that we had to walk through to get to it - I honestly thought it was a joke...ANYWAYS so we found this lady one day in the road and her name is ENAY....we ran into her in the streets twice, and she was so tender, like in overalls and a little hat and she invited us in and like everything we said she would just repeat, and I have no idea why but it was like the funniest lesson ever - me and my comp were laughing so hard we were crying...I was trying to teach her the actions of OLA, which is pray read and assist the church, and she like couldn’t do it - I have no idea - I guess you just had to be there, but we love Enay - I don’t think she will progress, but we pass a lot since we are always in the area. One day we passed and she was laying on a bed outside and literally looked like a dead person....it was out of control.
Also - I still haven’t talked about DIEGO!!! Oh my gosh - he is a member, and is going on a mission to Chile in like 2 weeks - and he is honestly the most amazing person I have ever met!!! He works with us like every day and is such a good missionary, and we are best friends. His story is soooo cool - he is so great…….I will have to tell it sometime when I can tell it in person, but anyway his little sister is getting baptized next week! Whoooo! -and yesterday was her interview and it was sooo chill haha like we just sat in the backyard as they had the interview, we all bonded and ate pomegranates, because they have a tree of them, and we got to talk to Lucas who is Diego’s brother, and his cute girlfriend who is deaf…….it is so sad, but she is a gem and I love her and feel we will teach her someday as well.
So - MIRACLES!!!! The day we were on intercambios with Hermana Lopez we knocked on this door, and it was this guy named Victor, and we were looking for his daughter, but she was sleeping, so we ended up talking to him. We talked about the gospel, and he started to get emotional, because he is looking for more peace, and a change in his life……and we committed him to be baptized! I looked him in the eyes and with all the Spanish I know promised him so much change and blessings through the gospel, and he just cried so much, and it was such a tender experience. The spirit is truly so amazing - how much we can communicate with people just through feeling the spirit. I just felt so much love for this man I had just met, and knew his situation, and I just testified with all my heart.
Also we were knocking doors one day, and found this girl named Carla and her mom Tina, and we have been teaching them, and its such a miracle, because they have been reading and praying and have really felt the spirit and know its true and want to go to church!!!
There is also this girl named Debra that I LOVE! She is the cutest thing- she is like 18, and has soooo many questions, and just loves to pray and loves when we sing her hymns, and we gave her a Book of Mormon, and she really wants to read it and go to church- but, she just started school, and never has time and is way busy, but we are praying for her and hope she can find the time. I love her! We bond - she reminds me of Camille’s friend Berlin.
So pretty much the mission is amazing - we truly see miracles every day - we are working sooooo hard, and even though this area is a little harder - we have faith and we know that if we do our part, God will do his. I love the mission so much and love teaching people about Christ. It is so hard for people to follow up on their commitments and I never realized how hard it is for people to do ANYTHING, and make changes, but I know that when we make sacrifices, and we make promises that we are going to do our part and find the time, and work hard and have faith, God will do his part and help us out and bless us!!!
I LOVE reading the Book of Mormon and can promise every single person that is reading this email that if you just take 10 minutes a day to read the Book of Mormon - you will be happier and find the answers to the questions you are looking for in life!! A quote I like is:
“We pray to God when we want to ask questions, and we read the Book of Mormon when we want to find answers.”
I LOVE YOU ALL WITH ALL MY HEART!!!!
Miss Youuuuuuuuuuu! Have a good week!
Friday, March 11, 2011
Monday March 7th
Family and Friends!!!!
All is well! I love my new area and I love my comp – its definitely different now that I am in the city -a bigger area with a lot of people, so it’s a little harder, but I love the ward and love the people and I am excited to work!
So it has been an AMAZING week!!!!! We have been working sooo hard and have seen tons of miracles. First of all this area has been working with this cute man named Vicente and he is truly such a great guy! He is like 70, lives with his son, and his wife died a few years ago, so he is way lonely……but he loves the gospel. He stopped smoking and goes to church, and he listens to the Book of Mormon CD’s every day because he cant read. He was planning on getting baptized this weekend, the 5th, and we were so excited, and passing everyday to help and prepare him.
One night he got all these doubts and was saying how he changed his mind and didn’t want to get baptized, and we were so sad, and my comp was so sad and crying, because she has worked with him and taught him, and this has happened to her like 3 times where people are all ready and then bail the last minute, and its been way hard for her. It was kind of awkward, and she was all sad, and he was just sitting there, and I felt bad because I didn’t know him that well. I just tried staying positive, and I looked at him and told him how much his Heavenly Father loves him and how He is ready and so excited for him to be baptized in His church. I truly was just pouring out with all sincerity of my heart all the Spanish I knew, and my testimony, because I truly know Satan was just working on him, and that he just needed to have faith and overcome this trial of faith. So I told him about prayer, and I talked about how personal it is and how he needed to have a conversation with his Father in Heaven and ask if he could get baptized on the 5th, and he said he would.
The next day-the day before the baptism - we passed and he was just GLOWING - so happy and content and said everything is okay, and he prayed and got an answer and he was ready to be baptized!!! We were SO happy and all just beaming and we watched the movie Faith in Christ, and we were all so emotional and just content! It was truly a miracle. So of course it was stressful in one day trying to tell all the members and investigators about this baptism and organize it, and it was a little stressful, but we had the baptism and everything ended up being perfect!!! I truly am full of joy, and love Vicente so much! He is just such a gem, and SO happy to be in the church! He was the first one to his baptism like soooo excited and ready it was so cute. He was very emotional in church too when he got confirmed, he loved it!
We are loving life here in Rosedal, and we are excited to see tons of miracles - all of March! We found of family of 4 and they are married (shocking) whoooo! We are hoping to teach them this week and get them to church Sunday. We also have some other good investigators we are hoping to get baptized this month. I love my comp-she is such a hard worker and we are both just soooo ready and willing to work - I love it - we are seriously fasting and just praying and working pdays – haha - we are just going to rely SO much and trust in the Lord and do anything it takes to have success and see miracles this transfer together! My Spanish is still doing pretty good even though I am now with a gringa…people understand me better than her -haha - its funny she gets sad and says I have to help her with her accent.
Well know that I am happy and I LOVE the mission…I am never coming home! Haha I love you all with all my heart and think about you all!!!
Monday Feb 28th, 2011
Family and Friends!!!
I don’t have much time to write since today was transfers, so this will probably be quick and I hope I can sum up all the good things that happened this past week.
So I completed my 6 months in the mission this week!! Whooo Hooooo! And my companion did as well - we have the same time in the mission, so it was fun to celebrate that together and we had our first baptism in the mission together!!! It was the best day of my life!!!!! It was Nico, and he is 13 and the most amazing kid ever, so faithful and has such a strong testimony. He is so stoked to be a member and serve a mission some day and he is just great! His mom and sister are going to get baptized this next weekend so we are so happy! I love their family so much - we bond - and every time we are all together there is just so much love, and I feel like I have known them forever! The baptism was so perfect……Nico was just beaming and the talks and the service were just so spiritual! I have never seen a happier kid, and after he was baptized he just kept looking over at me and smiling, and couldn’t stop talking about how happy and clean and content he felt! He always talks about how he can imagine when Christ will come with all the angels in the sky, and how beautiful it will be, and so I gave him a picture of Christ with all the angels in the sky…. and he loved it and put it in his school folder.
I cant even express how much I love this family! I feel so blessed to be able to know them. In church they all were there for his confirmation, and he loved his blessing and talked about how warm like a fire he felt right when the hands were placed on his head when he received the Holy Ghost, and he feels so protected. It was so precious!
Also another miracle that happened - Erwin came to church!! He was waiting for us all ready to go in the morning and it was such a miracle that he was even awake, let alone ready to go, and he loved it. Also - Osvualdo came to church! He moved out of the apartment with the lady he was living with and wants to prepare for baptism! He is so precious. When I told him I was leaving he started to cry and said he would never forget me and thanked me - it was so precious - I love him so much. Also we passed for Laura and Nico and their family last night before I left and it was SO fun- and right before we left Laura just hugged me really tight and looked at me and started to cry and said thank you for bringing her the gospel, and thanked me for teaching and helping her family. I just started to cry and said I would never forget them. Awe! It was so emotional and so tender.
So I am now in CORDOBA the city and my area is ROEDAL and my comp is Hermana ELLSWORTH- I am sooooooo excited - I already love it here, and I feel like we will have so much success and see tons of miracles together - we are like already best friends - I love her! I am sad I won’t be able to see the baptisms of the people I taught and prepared in Bellville or in Arroyito as well...but that’s how it goes in the mission, and I am just SO truly happy that I got to work with them and know them! What a blessing this work is! I love the mission so much and I can’t believe how much I am learning every day! Once again, it is another area for me, new companion, new people, new change, and new beginnings, but I am excited - and I am going to work as hard as possible and I have so much faith! I love you all and have a good week!!!!
Love, Hermana Pond