Monday, July 28, 2014

Feliz 28 de Julio!

So I dont have much to say this week, its been a pretty good one.  Today is Peru´s independance day and we will see how it goes! Last year we could do much on the 28th for all of the parties and stuff but now I'm in a much safer, "classier" area so I think it'll be more normal.  We are going to the temple this Wednesday so today after internet is a normal work day and Wednesday is our p day.  And thats about it! I spent a while responding to some letters but I hope to hear from y'all next week!

Hermana Bledsoe

Monday, July 21, 2014

Oh esta todo bien

Feliz día Lunes!

This week was super crazy and a bit stressful but AWESOME.  After a twist of events this week, we ended not only with one baptism, but TWO!  They were both young women who have family members who are recent converts.  Originally only Angela (13), who I think I mentioned before, was going to be baptized this weekend but last Sunday we were in Gospel Principles class with Jhennifer (17) and the members were asking us what time Angela´s baptism would be and we ended up combining the two baptisms (Jhennifer was going to be baptized this Saturday, the 26th).  We later found out that the elders from another ward that shares our building were going to have a baptism Saturday afternoon as well, so it ended up being quite a day.  It was a struggle until the very end, including several trials, but incredibly satisfying to see both Jhennifer and Angela make it to this point and keep progressing.  

This week we got permission to take Jhennifer to the temple, which was a great experience, she loved it.  We taught her a little about baptisms for the dead and she is excited to be able to do family history work with her older brother Jhunior (who was baptized about a year ago) because her dad passed away when she was a baby.  She said she felt good there and wants to go back soon.  Our ward is planning a temple trip with all the new converts in August!  Coming back to Surco from La Molina, we went straight to the church and Jhennifer rocked her baptismal interview.  She really is a great girl.  I hope someday she goes on a mission, she would be so great!

With Angela it was a bit more difficult.  We didnt have the chance to teach her much this week in preparation for her interview because she and her mom, Felipa --a recent convert-- were constantly at the clinic.  And on top of that she was getting nervous and having doubts about her decision.  Friday morning we stopped by and  she told us how she was feeling.  We taught her about personal revelation and how the Spirit confirms our decisions.  We shared with her a few verses of Doctrine and Covenants 6, and explained what had been going on with Oliver Cowdery and his doubts and how the Lord told him that he had received his answer:

22 Verily, verily, I say unto you, if you desire a further witness, cast your mind upon the night that you cried unto me in your heart, that you might know concerning the truth of these things.

 23 Did I not speak peace to your mind concerning the matter? What greater witness can you have than from God?

We asked her how she felt when she decided to be baptized and testified that her answer was from the Lord through the Holy Ghost. It was a great lesson and we really felt the Spirit.  Shortly afterwards our District Leader came to interview her and Saturday she was baptized!  Haha even that was a struggle because the first time she was baptized she was not fully submerged and so the elder had to do it again.  The second time he did it with his left hand in the air (hahahaha) so Angela was well baptized three times, the last time correctly and completely.  A baptism in the proper form and by the proper authority is SO important!!  The next day we had the confirmation in church and Angela almost couldnt make it because her mom was feeling sick again.  Thankfully our RS President is a nurse and an angel and she went over to help them out Sunday morning and Angela, her mom Felipa, and her brother Juan made it to church early for Angela´s confirmation and later Juan was ordained a priest!  We have been working super hard with this family of recent converts and it was amazing this weekend to see them progress so much.

Things here in Villa Alegre are going great.  We keep working and finding prepared people, its amazing.  There are always trials, but lots of blessings too.  One of mine is my companion.  She is super crazy and I love her!!  We are like Tommy and Richard, at times I have to keep her in check, but we have some great moments together!  Loving the mission!

Hasta la proxima!
Hermana Bledsoe
Jhennifer is the one next to Hermana Hernandez and Angela is on the far left :)

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Bienvenidos Familia Boswell!

Happy Monday!! 

This week was pretty crazy, but a good one.  We had district meeting on Tuesday morning and Wednesday we had a zone conference and finally got to meet President Boswell and his family.  They are excellent!  President Boswell is pretty different: he is a really tall man and is super energetic and all but you can feel when he talks that he really has taken on the mantle of our mission president and its awesome.  Change is good.  He speaks a lot of Spanglish, which is really good in my opinion so that the latinos can learn English.  He put a lot of emphasis on learning English because it is the language of the Restoration and really will open doors after the mission.  His wife and two daughters are really sweet and are learning Spanish and are doing well!  I feel like their example in making a real effort to learn the language is inspiring for those learning English.  But they really are loving and fun people, so I dont doubt that we are going to have a great time with them as our new family.  We had a conference with them and then ate lunch and later had companionship interviews with President and Sister Boswell so that they could get to know us better and vice-versa.  It was a great day!  

The rest of the week went well, on Thursday and Friday we had exchanges with the Hermana Leaders and I went to their area while Hermana Hernandez stayed in Villa Alegre.  I think we all learned a lot and had a good experience.  This week we have met a lot of people with interesting beliefs-- for Peru.  One guy was telling us we were all created by titans (because he read it on the internet) and one of our investigators told us she strongly believed in reincarnation.  This keeps things interesting because usually we only meet a lot of jehovahs witnesses, evangelical christians, traditional catholics, and my favorite: catholic "but in my way".  We listen to others and what they believe, but also let them know what we share and testify that its the truth.  The titans guy was going on and on and we had to go to another appointment, and my companion said we had to go, but very directly told him that what he was saying is false.  I couldnt believe that she would be so direct, but it is true.  It reminded me of the importance of the source of our beliefs: do we believe something because we were raised that way, or because someone convincing told us to, or maybe because we have found what we find a reliable source.  The only way to really truly know is to ask God as James directs.  If we do that, we will never be confused by the worlds beliefs.  

Sunday was a test of the faith of our ward because we have church at 2pm-- during the World Cup.  Thankfully a lot of people were still at church and made the right choice :)

Love you guys! Til next time!

Hermana Bledsoe

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Para esta hora

Hey yall!

I am writing late today because for p-day today we went to Gamarra! This time I went for winter clothes and got some great and cute cute stuff for CHEAP! Gotta love Peru!  

So this week has been pretty good.  The 4th of July was a good one here-- I was able to celebrate a little with other Americans because that day I went to Migrations... woooo! Haha. I went with three other American sisters and several Elders and although we couldnt be eating barbeque and watching fireworks, it was cool to chat with and be with others from my COUNTRY!  

We also had a really good week in the work... I honestly dont know how, but we finished the week with FOUR people with baptismal dates!  I never thought that was possible in Surco, but Ive been reminded that with God, anything is possible. Wow.  One of them is a thirteen year old girl named Angela who always came to church with her mom who is a recent convert and has health problems-- so she always went to church with her to look after her and never wanted to go to YW.  Hermana Hernandez told me she was always really cold with the sisters and didnt want to listen to them at all.  When we taught her family I just noticed that she was always just really quiet.  I dont know what happened, but this week we showed up and she was smiling for the first time and told us she wanted to be baptized.  We thought it was a joke, but we kept visiting them during the week and really her whole countanance has changed.  She is always smiling and yesterday she went to Young Womens without us having to invite her!!  I think her time just came and her moms prayers have been answered.  Pretty cool.

This week Hermana Hernandez and I were watching the Old Testament videos about Esther and decided to study the book of Esther together.  It was really cool to read and I really love her story.  I thought a lot about how we as missionaries, especially those who left after the age change and Sister Missionaries, have been given such an extraordinary opportunity at an unexpected time.  Esther was put in her position as Queen not by chance, but because God knew that she would be able to save her people.  As Mordecai told her in chapter 4 verse 14, "...and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"  For such a time as this.  The Lord is hastening His work NOW.  He needs us NOW.  We truly have been predestined to be born at this time and have answered the call to serve at such a time as this... LOVE IT!

Funny moment... we were in a lesson the other day and the recent converts daughter left the house scantily dressed.  During the prayer, the convert says: "Lord, please forgive my daughter for leaving the house in such a wicked and provactive manner." HAHAHA.  I was trying SO hard not to laugh.  My companion could feel me shaking and she too was biting her finger so as not to laugh.  Funny mission moments...

Love yall! Til next week!

Hermana Bledsoe

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Para Siempre Dios Este Con Vos

Hello hello! ... ("I dont know why you say goodbye I say hello" haha)

So week 2 here in Surco was pretty good... we had a very emotional farewell multizone conference on Wednesday with the four other zones and the Ardila family.  Wow, changing mission presidents is a lot harder than I expected! We felt the Spirit so strongly there as President, his wife, and his youngest daughter Paula shared their last testimonies with us.  I am so incredibly grateful for their service and for the love they have for us missionaries.  They always say they have 200+ children and I dont doubt that they really do see us that way.  I dont think Ill ever forget the moment when we sang "God Be With You Til We Meet Again" to finish the meeting and I looked over at my mission president and saw him weeping.  There wasnt a dry eye in the house.  We will all miss him so much.  I look up to President and Sister Ardila SO much for their obedience to the Lord and their diligence in all things.  Wow, I have been so blessed to have them in my life and have learned countless things from them. They really finished their mission strongly and with honor and I hope that one day I will follow their example.

That was basically the highlight of this week besides yesterday when we had a visit from a Seventy, Elder Calderon in our ward. He gave a great talk and our investigator, Cris, liked listening to him a lot.  I feel so blessed to be here in Peru and be a part of the work here.  We hit the pavement every day looking for people to visit and teach and although at times Im physically or emotionally exhausted, I just try to keep going and remember that Christ is the reason.  He never complained or took a break because there are so many of us who need Him so desperately.  I know that this is His church and His work and I hope to be His instrument to help others come unto Him.

Love you all SO much!
Hermana Bledsoe


Happy Monday! 

So this week was had transfers because it was a 4-week transfer. There werent a ton of changes overall in the mission, but I was transferred to what Im sure will be my last area... Ive come back to Lima and I´m in SURCO!  My ward is called Villa Alegre, which translates to something like "Happy Town," haha.  Surco is a really nice (wealthy) part of Lima and the members here are awesome.  Ive only been here a week but I love it here so much.  We work a lot more with the members here and receive references like no other! Seriously, every family we visit on average has at least 2 references.  They really understand the importance of member missionary work and are super helpful and loving to the missionaries.  Its been a huge change from Chosica in terms of that and the weather and the standard of living so Im getting used to everything still.  But I feel like the Lord has blessed me a lot to be here and to be with my new companion, Hermana Hernandez from Honduras.  She is super fun and an awesome missionary. Shes a lot like my trainer, Hermana Aguayo, because she likes to joke around and has a goofy personality, but when she teaches she is super focused and teaches really well.  Wow, I have learned to much from her already.  

This week is President Ardila´s last week and we will have his farewell this week with our zone and several others. I got his last weekly letter today and teared up... I will miss the Ardila family so much but I know that change is good.

Love yall! Have an awesome week!
Hna Bledsoe