I don’t have much time so I am going to give you all a quick over view of what has gone down in ¨the skirt¨ LA FALDA this week!
- News from Arroyito- CARMEN my favorite convert ever just got called to be relief society president....YAY! she is going to do awesome!
-Cat lady - we were contacting people in the streets and knocking doors and we pass this one house and visibly there were over 20 cats just in the front of the house...I like screamed - haha - I was so excited! We found out its a really old lady and she’s super protective of her cats so we got in trouble for even like looking at them - haha - I wanted to take pics but they wouldn’t let me...it was my dream I loved it...I am the creepy cat lady! We later found out she has over 60...
-Officially Argentine - I have now lived in Argentina for over a year....whoooo! I am old. I still get sad though when people ask me where I am from when I begin to talk - haha – my freaking gringa accent holds me back from becoming the ethnic true raw argentine I want...and my blonde roots are coming in so its a little obvious.
-Blanca y Nieve - so we found Nemecio - homeless guy - in the streets again this week and taught him and invited him to church. Like usual he is carrying his piece of foam bed around and has his dog Blanca y Nieve following him around. We took pics and bonded and he thanked us for being his friend. He is a gem.
-We taught this 16 year old kid this week that just got in the scariest motor cycling accident ever. When we found him he was outside on his porch and just looked so sad and freaked out. He had a head on crash with a car and literally almost lost his life. He is out for like 6 months and cant walk and has this huge metal bar going down his leg to hold his bones in place. It was so hard looking into this lost and scared face of a teenage kid who barely almost lost his life and had no idea why it had to happen to him. We gave him the plan of salvation and promised him it would give him comfort and purpose. I have been praying for him all week. His name is Juliano.
-Like usual we find the most odd people to teach. Normally kids running in the streets, homeless, or crippled people because they are all looking for help and love and ¨have time¨ to listen. That is why it is so important for members to work with the missionaries in the ward because they can help them find people to teach. This guy we found was homeless, crippled, and a little drunk and very alone. We got chatting with him and as I looked at this precious old man I just knew that Christ loved him. He smelled so bad, had really messed up burnt hands, and was cross eyed but as we spoke to him you could feel the sincerity of his heart and the humility he had in life. He meant no harm and truly just wanted to be happy. He smiled a lot and after teaching him a little we gave him a little pass along card with a picture of Jesus on it and he held it close to his heart and said he is going to keep it with him forever. I thought about how in society it would be so normal to look upon this man and judge, hate, discriminate, abandon, or ignore and I just felt so blessed to find him in that moment, feel of the love that God had from him, and testify to him of that love and to not let anyone let him forget it. I knew if Christ were with us in that very moment he would be moved with compassion like it states in the scriptures and immediately heal this mans infirmities because he truly did have so much faith and hope. This is one of the reasons I love the mission - the tender mercies we experience each day in the mission.
-We are teaching this little girl named Milagros and she has grandparents that are inactive members and she is SO epic. She wants to get baptized so bad and every time we come over she is so ready to pray and tell us about what she studied. She went to church on Sunday and LOVED IT! She has a date for the 12th of November so we are crossing out fingers. Her little sister is 4 and SO cute and we are best friends. One night we were walking to her house and she looked out the car window and with these big eyes she mouthed with so much excitement...¨Jeni!!!¨ haha - She cant say Hermana Pond so I told her my name was Jami and she says Yeni - its SO cute. We love their family and work with them every other day.
-Argentine ice cream man - one day we are walking to our apartment for lunch and we see this really small funny looking man and he is carrying this huge white box over his shoulder and we wondered what he was doing. After a few minutes we just hear him like screaming so much - and we were so confused as to what was going on, and finally we figured out he was yelling HELADOOOOOO....no cool van with pretty pictures of all different ice creams to buy and pretty music filling the neighborhoods but a argentine midget man pacing so intensely up the streets screaming at the top of his lungs HELADO....love Argentina.
-Argentine children gone wild - so we are teaching this girl Gisel and she has a son that is 4 and his name is Fernando. Every time we are at their house he is like running around crazy but this week we passed and he was literally out of control. He had a hammer and was like going around shirtless just hitting everything with this hammer and somehow got coal all over his face so he looked like some Indian or warrior. For some reason he got mad at his mom and so he went in the house and one by one he was coming out and throwing different things at all of us. It started out little but then it turned into chairs and boxes of his toys and like a stove iron sitch, and his mom was just like laughing and it was nuts. He finally comes out with like the heaviest thing and as he is doing all this he is like screaming PAPEEE! and has tears running down his face making the war paint like run everywhere and then he comes super close to his mom and screams at the top of his lungs and is like threatening her with a chair above his head about to chuck it at her. I was so amused - I just sat there like struck dumb –haha- because I couldn’t believe what was going down - psycho indio child, gone crazy, and the mom is just sitting there laughing. The kid got over it and just ended up climbing on the roof and chucking things off it but lucky this time it wasn’t at us……this whole thing made me terrified to be a mother some day!
Service - one night its late and we are walking home and we pass this old lady in the street and just with the biggest smile on my face I say hi to her and she is so struck by it she like stops and asks how she knows me – haha - we explained to her we are missionaries and we like to say hi to everyone and offered her help with her bags. We ended up like listening to her life story and carrying the heaviest bags for miles – haha - it was funny because she was just going and going and my comp and I just laughed because it seriously felt like bricks were in her bags and i could barely make it up the hill. She was cute. Love service.
-One of my favorite inactives that we are working with is named Sonia, and we had a family home evening with her and her 4 cute girls. Her husband is not a member and so he wasn’t really interested in listening and when we invited him over he like awkwardly pretended he didn’t hear- haha- shoot. But we had a really good lesson about the story of the tree of life and Sonia really liked it and I feel like it really helped her because on Sunday we saw her and all of her girls show up to church with bright faces after like months not going. She is so cute and we definitely want to work with them more.
I read a talk by Eyring this week that I really enjoyed. It talks about spiritual preparedness and how we must always make the right choices before the hard times come. I like the part when he said...
¨However much faith to obey god we now have, we will need to strengthen it continually and keep it refreshed constantly. We can do that by deciding now to be more quick to obey and more determined to endure. Learning to start early and to be steady are the keys to spiritual preparation. Procrastination and inconsistency are its mortal enemies.¨
¨A loving Heavenly Father and his beloved son have given us all the help they can to pass the test of life set before us. But we must decide to obey and then do it. We build the faith to pass the tests of obedience over time and through our daily choices. We can decide now to do quickly whatever God asks of us. We can decide to be steady in the small tests of obedience which build the faith to carry us through the great tests, which will surely come.¨
It is so important to make the choice today to follow God and be obedient to the things he has given us so we can increase our faith and enjoy blessings and so when those tough times come we are spiritually firm and ready to always choose God and his side, we can never give up and always press forward and choose to follow God. He is the only one that can help us and it is through simple obedience to his laws and commandments that make us stronger and prepare us always for the tests and trials of life. We can never give up. We must always go forward and work on our faith and confidence in him daily. Using our agency correctly is so key. We have so much responsibility to do good and we can with the help of God. Remember who you are - a child of God - trust in the direction he has given you - go forward-and you will make it. Always choose the right. Be strong enough to do so. Stand up for what you believe in. Don’t fear and keep the faith. You have a ton of help and support. Don’t ever doubt. I love the mission and love being a missionary. Time goes by fast…..in life and in the mission. Let us enjoy every experience we have. Cherish it all. Learn and grow. Take it in. Embrace life. LOVE YOU ALL!
Love Hermana Pond