Saturday, September 21, 2013

Gotta Keep Trecken... (Sept 16)

Hello Querida familia y amigos,

How’s it goin? Things are still just trecken along here in the good ol´Santa Cruz. I think sometimes God sends you on your mission to the country where you should have been born in. I LOVE bolivia so very much. But anyways...

So wow lots of stuff this week! Madie, i hope you have a super happy awesome 16th birthday! You should be receiving something in the mail from me soon I hope. Also so great that Annalisa is home! And that Holly got her call- i laughed a little- it seems like the perfect mission for her! Also Tiana has a baby? Too weird! Also I got an awesome package with the shirt, peanut butter, pictures, and balloons! So great! Now i just need to some how finda balloon pump haha . But the pictures are super adorable, I feel like my family just keeps getting more and more attractive every time i see a picture!
Ok so how happy am I about everything that happened at Trevor´s farewell? Trev you are awesome and i am so proud of you! You are seriously so amazing and you are going to become such a spiritual giant on your mission! Seriously watch out Japan, "here comes Elder Black"! (that last part was sung by me to the tune of men in black.) Ah! Also Mitchell! What a tender moment. Seriously what an amazing and inspiring family I have. Trevor, it´s going to be hard, but you are going to love it. I remember all the people in the mtc that had to be there for a long time. You´re there for 12 weeks right? Anyways they were always really cool. Really sick of being there after 10 weeks, but great examples and helpers to all the new people. Anyways you´re just going to have so many opportunities to be an example you don’t even know! But anyways enjoy. Say hello to the orange soda tree for me. And here´s to a great mission! Also mom, what´s his address in the mtc and/or field? I wanna write my bro.  
ok so moving on to bolivia... Coni (pancake family) came to church again this week. We are hoping to work everything out so that she can get baptised on the 28th but we still don’t have an exact fecha which is hard. Things are just complicated with her family. But we will get there. Other than that we dont have any investigators. We are actually struggling a lot with this in the zone right now- except for the other sisters in our ward who have 4 baptisms ready for this Saturday. So our zone leaders read this cool story about eagles on Monday. Did you know, that eagles can live to 70 years old? But they can only do this if they go through a renovacion when they are 40 years old. What they have to do is fly to a high mountain with a flat wall. Then they have to break their beak off which is super painful. Then they have to wait for it to grow back, and then break their nails off, wait for them to grow back and then scratch their feathers off. It’s a really painful process that takes about 150 days. If they do this, they live for another 30 years. If they don’t, they die. We talked about how sometimes there are moments in the mission (and life) like this. When things aren’t all hunky dory we have two options: to keep working hard, or get trunky. (a little less extreme than the eagles). The results though one day will be super different based upon what we choose to do. We decided as a zone that we are going to keep working, and learn what it is that God wants us to learn during this time of renovacion. Renovation? I hope that’s the word in english haha. Anyways so we are working hard during this renovation time, and we are trying to be patient waiting for miracles. Marivel sent me this "jar of inspiration" that i open every monday, and the inspiration that i happened to open this week was a quote from the fairy god mother on cinderella that said, "even miracles take a little time". couldn’t have been more perfect inspiration for this week :).
I was definitely at the end of my rope this last week, but its usually when you´re at the end of your rope that you learn to use the rope God has. (im betting my money that its a lot, lot longer than mine is.) So here´s to a good week. We are going to have baptisms soon. But if not, the church is still true, God still lives, and this still is His true work. We’ve got some great activities that we are putting into action this week. One is that we are going to put out these little flyers on everyone´s doors that say, "why are mormons so happy? visit mormon.org" that one of the nice members in our ward printed out. I have great hope that this will bring about good results. Our area is super rich, so like there is always lots of missionaries from other churches knocking on the same doors. So we are going to try to enter by another means, which God has provided. Pray that we get some references!

Well that´s really all I’ve got to say today. Thanks so much for your letters! Seriously lately I’ve been feeling like maybe all our hard work is helping our families and friends back home more than anyone out here, but that’s also extremely important for us. But we also know that one day we will be able to see all the differences we made in other peoples’ lives. WE just gotta keep trecken. Which is what we are going to do.

Anyways thanks for all your prayers and support! Have great bday madie, and an awesome first week of your mission trev! love, hermana elisa black  

hermana elisa black in santa cruz bolivia (Sept 9)

hello my dear family and friends,
so im here in santa cruz bolivia. in case anyone forgot. haha. sorry its been a long week...

anyways first off, if anyone wants to send me something for christmas, they should just send me money and i will buy them something from bolivia. i just want bolivia stuff haha. also my last day of the mission is Jaunary first. Surprise! I bet you didnt know you were going to spend new years eve in an airport! haha. Well actually it might be january 2nd. But its that week. I dunno if you guys will get something in the mail or anything... hopefully its a little more organized por USA missionaries, but here sometimes they just call the family on monday and then the missionaries are home on friday...so maybe ask hermana morris she´ll probly know. Also my body is doing good this week- yes i take my meds and everything. i just get so sunburnt on my scalp that it bleeds some times haha. but dont worry i´m using sunscreen now. also no i havent got a package yet, but neither has any of the other gringos, and basically all of us are waiting packages so i´m sure everything will hit us sometime soon.  Also i love that story from Patrice- she is so sweet to always be sharing things with me! 
ok so this part is for Talitha. Talitha: its time to be a big girl. Heavenly Father has blessed you with a hard life, and I can´t be there right now to hold your hand, but you need to listen to and obey mom and dad ok? I´m coming home and I want to meet a happy princess Talitha and not a grouchy grouch. Deal?
Also Trevor you´re such a hoot hahaha! I wanta sombrero picture! so funny. Wow next week is your farewell talk!  ah! you´re going to love the mission. You´re going to learn so much and its so stinking hard, but you will be a better person and you will just learn more about yourself then you could ever know doing anything else. Good luck with your talk!
also thats so crazy about all the rain! I love the rain but what damage it can do wow... thats so great that you guys were able to serve! Enjoy the rain! we actually need to have a rain here soon, because the humidity is just building and building and its stiffling but todo via no hay lluvia!

ok.... so monday night and tuesday morning we had like a broken up leaders conference. it was really great becuase the monday night part was like a family home evening of leaders, and we all sat in comfortable chairs in the presidents house with airconditioning. wow. it was amazing. Also President is so inspired. He hardly talked the whole three hours- yet we learned and growed so much. (va a disculpar mi ingles..mejor dicho "grew")  its because he is letting us learn to find the answers. he´s building us up so that we can be future leaders someday. He seriously is teaching me so much, and saying so little.
On wednesday we had a great miracle- this less active (pancake) family we are working with. The mom found work- her dream job! and she knows its from going to church and starting to get her life in line. she shared this with her extremely inactive husband, and he was like "wow maybe i should go to church!" also the other family that lives in her house is the Robles family, with the kid who is named Elder. They still haven't gone to church, but now they are taking note of this miracle and little by little we will get there.
on thursday to start my personal study i prayed to know what to do in my area becuase it has felt so dry and i feel like i´ve knocked every door and we dont have anyone that is progressing. well i opened my BOM and read Jacob 5:22. and wow i dont have anymore time to write but this was a miracle for me, and we found some new people that we are excited about.
[Jacob 5:22 And the Lord of the vineyard said unto him: Counsel me not; I knew that it was a poor spot of ground; wherefore, I said unto thee, I have nourished it this long time, and thou beholdest that it hath brought forth much fruit.]
its still super hard here in this area, but my faith doesn't depend on the results i get. even when children draw with permanent marker on my white shirt. haha..... It´s a sacrifice to find real happiness. But its´a sacrifice i am willing to make, and am doing the best i can to be worthy of the happiness that i want.
anyways i love you all!

love, hermana elisa black  

It doesn't matter...I am here for my Savior (Sept 2)

Okee dokee familee,
First off i tried to send a picture but it didn’t work...I think i got one to marivel so you could bug her to send it to you haha. Anyways first off thanks for all the great news! That’s so great about Jackie having her baby, Carissa receiving her mission call, and Holly getting hers on the way! So many great things! Hope you had a great birthday talitha! Who has the best family in the world? Oh yeah that would be me. Oh also that’s cool that Talitha got a whistle because i don’t remember sending one haha. Maybe that was meant for malorie.
Ok this week was interesting. we worked hard and long... it’s interesting for me because i can really see how much I’ve progressed in the mission. I have so much more faith and patience and trust in the lords timing. I have felt good and like my faith is building even though I’ve been here for two months working super hard without a baptism. I definitely have grown in my faith and patience being out here which is such a blessing (for me and all my friends and family haha).
Anyways loved the pictures and advice I received in the letters I got last monday! soooo cute! Who has the cutest and most attractive family in the world? oh yeah that would be me.
Well last week we did find this one family that was a reference from another family in the ward. It’s a family living in one room (normal) and it’s a single mom (normal) with 7 kids under the age of 18 (not as normal). And the mom told us on the second visit that she is leaving to Chile to live with her sister and work there for three months, leaving her kids (ages 17, 15, 13, 11, 8, 6, 3) alone. I dunno if it’s just because we have no one to teach, but I just felt so strongly that we can’t leave these kids alone. Normally, we don’t even talk to kids without an adult... But i dunno. I just felt like i should ask the mom to sign the permission to teach them before she left. So we´ve been stopping by to bring them food and wash their clothes when we can. The kid who is 17 is a boy and he is working to feed the family. The 15 year old is named Melisa, and she is going to high school and being mom for them. We just held her as she cried the day after her mom left. We gave them a picture of Jesus. Yesterday we also got the relief society involved- they are going to take turns bringing lunch every sunday.  It’s just so hard to see people suffer so much. 
Well anyways... We are going to have at least one baptism this month. yay! Coni and her mom came to church again! They want her to get baptized on the 14th or 21st of september. So we are teaching them (the pancake family) which is great. Also thanks to fasting and lots of prayer, we are having breakthroughs with other investigators, and we are feeling good about September. This ward is great- they´ve got great intentions to help with this missionary work, now we´ve just got to combine their desires with our work and we should be in for a great time.
It’s crazy, but even with how hard these last two months have been, I’ve never loved the mission more. Seriously i bore my testimony yesterday and was just so full of the spirit i thought i might explode! I´m so happy! It doesnt matter that my head has started to bleed again from how hot it is here, doesnt matter that rabbied dogs are coming out again, doesnt matter that the bacteria has come back on my face, doesnt matter that i can’t see through the wind and dirt in my face these days... I am here for my Savior, and I am so grateful! I love this gospel. I love the truth! I love how i feel inside! I love being happy! I love my life, and my family! Let’s keep progressing and have a great eternity shall we? Here´s to my last 4 months.
con mucho amor,

Hermana Elisa Black  

Here's to new beginnings (Aug 26)

hello hello my dear family and friends! 

So we now have an hour and a half to write letters so hopefully this letter is a good one haha. I feel so blessed now. And poor mal only can write for half an hour! I didn’t know presidents could do so much. i thought missions were a lot more uniform. But anyways... 

yeah i do get dearelders, just usually in a group after like 3 weeks and sometimes i don’t get the ends of the letters. I hope you keep all the things you send via dearelder so i can read them in their entirety one day. haha. also yeah i am so excited for Jackie! She´s gunna be an AWESOME mom one day. haha should say SOON! 

Also mom so cool about Education week. So glad you could do that and that it was fun for you! I feel like we had similar weeks, this week felt like a new beginning for me too, which i will explain mas adelante. But that’s so great. Also good luck to Tali and Afton at school today! Also i hope madeline is enjoying getting back into school! Tell me all about your first days girls! Also Trevor, dang son. · weeks... que va a hacer... (thats like "what are you going to do" but it means like "dang or wow") I told you my bishop is japanese right? spanish with a japonese accent is like the best thing ever haha.

Multi-zone activity
Ok so on monday we had an awesome multi zone activity. I tried to send pictures, hopefully you got them. The picture with lots of people is the two zones. The one with not very many people is just my zone.


Distict

We aren’t much bigger than a district because we just divided from another zone so thats why we are not very many people. But i actually really like it. we are a fun zone. For the activity we played sport and had a BBQ in the park. But someone found a chess set and i ended up battling it out with some people. It got pretty intense and it was so fun! I was so into it haha but it was so fun. We all learned a lot of english while playing. (things like "oh no!" and "dang it!" and "you cant´do that!" and "I win!" haha we had a lot of fun). 

A moment of losing :-)

 Wednesday we got working hard. We found a new person to teach- her name is Mirna and she is studying at the univisidad here. There was this really awkward moment in the lesson when i was looking at fotos of her family and was like "thats a really nice picture of your dad" and she was like "oh that’s my mom". Like, what can you do after that? But she is awesome and I think she´s got some real intention which is exciting! Right after that we had this lesson with these two ladies and hermana james was like "invite your daughter to the lesson" and the lady was like "that’s my sister!" so...we are definitely good at awkward in this companionship. 

On thursday we invited one of our investigators to the zone meeting, and we all practiced teaching him together. His name is Ryder, and he has been going to church since marchish, but just doesn’t want to get baptized. We had a poweful lesson (14 missionaries teaching together) and he really felt the spirit. His biggest concern right now is that if he gets baptized and goes to the celestial kingdom, he wont be with his family because they will be in another kingdom. So we are going to work on that with him this week. He is really great and extremely active. Also we found this other family of 8 that are basically ready. its a solo mom with 7 kids. She can only go to church every other week but she did meet with the missionaries like 5 years ago. But her kids went to church the other week. We found them because they live in the house of Bladimir. sometimes God has different things in mind than i do. And isn’t that wonderful?

Friday we found yet another family that has gone to the church before, and they want to get baptized! They just have a lot of things they need to get figured out first. This day was extremely cold, and guess what zone decided to give up their blankets to be washed thrusday? Us. So we all are basically dying of cold haha. But no today (monday) is a little warmer. Also Hermana James and i knocked on this door of this hilarious dog that could jump super high. Now if we ever have a bad day we know what door we are going back to. Seriously we laughed for a good 10 minutes straight.

On saturday we had a lesson with the husband who isn’t a member but his wife is a less active. I’ve met with him one other time, but i think he is developing real interest, and we are excited about him. we got him to kneel (ok not us. the spirit) down and pray for his family. He got up after and said that he hadn’t prayed in 19 years. He just was very calm and seemed to really be meditating in all that we explained about his family. Normally he just plays playstation all night long. The first time i passed by with my companion he didn’t want to talk to us. But we just did a super fast powerful lesson in less than 5 minutes, and after he was like oh wait... you can talk a little more. We have been taking it slow, but today we taught about joseph smith and i think he was really touched. So we are excited.

Sunday it was super cold, but we have valiant members who came to church! Also we made pancakes and brought them to one of our investigators house to get them up to go to church . Um now have a testimony of the power of pancakes and think I’m going to do this more! Even though it was soooo dang cold, they saw the pancakes and got ready and came to church! Well really it’s a less active family but their 11 year old daughter isn’t baptized and missionaries have been trying to get them to church since february. Well the solution was pancakes my friends. So hopefully we will be getting this family back into action soon! (They also have other family that they live with that aren’t members so they can really be powerful help if they can get active!) So we are happy about this. 

Also i have a testimony of the importance of both of the missionaries needing to have their hearts and strength and might in the work. Seriously i feel like i am in a new area, and it’s just because hermana james and i worked hard together this week. We have tons of new promising people, more than i ever had in my month and a half with my other companion. So if you are thinking about marrying someone who isn’t in the church, I’d really say think again. You´ve got to have the same goals and desires and stuff like that. Life lessons from the mission. The mission is really the best preparation for life. And this is just one small example of that. 

Oh also my ward got together as relief society on sunday to go and visit all the less actives with the stake relief society presidency. We met with them after to get references from them, and seriously they were all glowing and happy from being able to find and help people. If you want to be happy, go and visit someone. Seriously it was so great to see all of these sisters just pink from the cold but smiling with the joy of lifting someone else. I know that helping others makes us happy. So go out and help someone this week. Go out of your way, take some time, but just do something different that you wouldn’t normally do to make someone else a little happier. I invite you to do this because I want you to be happy. Deal? deal.

Have a great day, a great week, and know that I love this work more than ever! Thanks for your prayers, encouragement, and love. Keep the faith,


Hermana Elisa Black  

A week of...transition I guess you could say (Aug 19)


Hello hello!

So lots of change this week. First some housekeeping items: my zone leaders just sang "buenas noches Hermana Black" because i always sing people’s names when i talk to them on the phone. Also, i´d love to get trevors pics! And does malorie have pics? Because i never got those. Also um so cool if you can go to Disney land! You should schedule the trip for january ,) heehee. Also good luck in school to Madeline, Afton, and Talitha! It’s sure coming up quick! Also happy birthday to Grandma, Malorie, Michaela, (and Lula) this week! Hope you all have an awesome Birthday! 

Ok so first thing was monday. We had an awesome noche de hogar (family home evening) with Bladimir who brought two of his friends. We watched a short version of the Joseph Smith movie and shared testimonies. It was really neat. Bladimir loves learning and for this he brought friends too. Even though they weren’t nearly as into it as he was, it was cool that he is already being a missionary. 

Tuesday we had a conference with Presidente Willard. What a diference it was! Everyone was crying because it was so spiritual. Or maybe because we are all latinos. haha. But it was really awesome. I really like something that Hermana Willard said. She said, "I´m going to do what I can do. And I´m always going to do better when I can". (ok it was something like that- it sounds better in spanish). It has helped me not be so stressed when i try to do too much. I can only do what i can do. I don’t need to worry about what i cant do yet. I’m going to keep learning and working though so that what i can do is better every day. That’s something President talked about too- that it doesn’t matter where you are today, as long as tomorrow is just a little bit better. That you learn something every day. They (President and Hermana Willard) also are always talking about miracles and having miracles every day in this work. It’s incredible the changes that are happening here and i really think that it is all for the better. We are looking for the Lords hand more and finding the spirit in this mission. It’s very nice. 

Well wednesday was interesting. My companion got a cambio! She went to another city, which just recently got opened for sisters in this mission like 2 months ago. It was part of the mission cochabamba before. So anyways I basically sat in the airport for forever with my zone leaders because my companion left, and we were waiting for my companion to arrive. It was so weird not having a companion!haha I didnt realize how normal it has become to always be with someone. But weirder was the feeling i got as we were pulling into the airport. AH! I was like no no no I don’t want to go! So I know that when i do finally leave my mission it’s going to be super hard. I like did not want to enter the airport. Wow only 4 and a half months left. ah! ok that was my freakout. Moving on...my new companion is Hermana James from Salt Lake City, Utah. She has a month in the mission, so now I’m going to finish her training. 

On thursday we went to the Cumavi to buy Hermana James some shoes because she only had one pair of good walking shoes. All of the new girls came in with bad walking shoes. I think the church is putting such an emphasis on being cute, that we are forgetting to be practical. If you can’t walk around it doesn’t matter how cute you look! But we found two pairs of awesome shoes for her so that’s good. Also it’s so great having her as a companion. She is definitely here for the right reasons and wants miracles to happen, so we are having miracles. This is a big change. 


Sunday bladimir did come to church. but he told us that he doesn’t feel ready to get baptized this saturday. So we are obviously going to be praying hard and fasting for this. There are three other young men in the ward that keep going to church for months and just keep saying that they aren’t ready. The devil is so subtle! I just don’t want Bladimir to be number four. He has got to be baptized. It´ll be such an example and help to these other young men (who are all in missionary age! oh except one who is 26). So we are praying for that. Also Hermana Barrios is doing well in her new area. I really think that Hermana James and Hermana Barrios just needed to do this change. Hermana Barrios called me this night and told me about how she feels so much more comfortable in her new area, which is a small pueblo and not huge city like santa cruz. So I’m happy about that- maybe it’s what she needed to really start her mission.

Anyways I really hope that all is well at home and that this is an awesome last week of summer vacation for everyone! I hope that trevor is getting ready and excited. Also i sent birthday cards to Grandma, Malorie, and Talitha so hopefully those will be arriving soon. I love you all so much!

love, hermana elisa black


the picture is me and hermana James, my new companion.       

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Ups and downs - keep going


Building a house for a service project

Hi family!

Whats happenen?  Hey sounds like this summer has really been a great one. I am so happy for that!

This week was interesting. We are teaching this kid of 19 years right now that is just progressing super great! His name is Bladimir and he knows the bible better than anyone i´ve ever talked to in bolivia! so its fun to talk to him- sometimes our lessons are 2 hours long! this is a lot and not recommended, but he seriously wants to keep learning. we always try to answer all of his questions, and when he doesnt have anymore, he asks, whats next? he will be getting baptized 24 of August! All of my converts tend to be Young men…well they will just all go on missions and convert all the families of the world. Thats ok. J He is seriously doing well though and we are (relieved) excited to have someone progressing!

My companion is still struggling which is hard. I have to give her pep talks, jump on her bed and sing to her, and when i do these things we are good to go: for one day. After, we have to start over again and i am tired. But its the work we do when we are tired that counts the most right?

My zone right now; favorite zone so far

The good thing is that i have awesome zone leaders right now. I think i wrote about how they sang to me on the phone one day? Well today we had an awesome getting to know you activity. It was nice that not only were the hermanas invited to the activity, they really seemed to care about us and getting to know us. This has really helped me not feel so alone. I keep working. And repenting. And working. And i can tell my testimony is like a ton stronger than when i started my misión. Like when we do have lessons (only like 10 a week…this is extremely low), I can just feel the spirit in the room when I bare my testimony. I have really worked hard to get to know God and his góspel, and it is really paying off now which is awesome. I am not only saying words when i talk. I am really saying what i know is true, from the bottom of my soul. This is exciting. I know God has more work for me to do here (even though satan is trying to convince me otherwise) so im going to keep working.

Last night Hna mita, the other “mama” sister who lives in the house and i talked a lot. She comforted me and i have more desires to keep doing good work even if i dont feel like anything is happening. I have more desires to talk to everyone, even if they do or say horrible things to me. Because how else are we going to find the people who ARE ready and waiting for the góspel?

I do love Bolivia. I love this church. I love the good news of christ.  I seriously get promptings to pray for people sometimes, and our [Provo] neighbors have been on the list for a while. I love this góspel. Its hard when people just dont get it. I just want people to be happy. But his is Gods work in HIS way. And i am grateful that He at least has the pacience to teach me every lesson.

Love you all,
Hermana Elisa black

ps  sorry... i think i really did used to write more...just know my thoughts are more here in bolivia now- i have less time to think about what i am going to write home. this is good haha. well love you all seriously so much.

pps oh also this week we had a consejo de lideres which was awesome. we got to talk with president and hermana Willard who are finally back in the mission! they are super inspired and i love that at conferences we now focus more on feeling the spirit, building ourselves up, and love. seriously such a diference. i am grateful that i am here to witness such diferent approaches to missionary work. also tuesday was Independence day for Bolivia! so there was lots of parades and dancing. that was pretty fun. President was talking during the council and a band was passing by the church we were in. he plays the drums professionally, and he just couldnt focus when the band was passing so we got to go outside to watch the parade. haha. i am learning about how to let go of stress which is nice.

ppss  oh funny experience- when i was at the conference, My companion had the cellphone. well Bladimir (our one investigator) texted her to ask where the practice was to dance in the ward talent show that night. well she thought he was one of the elders or hermanas asking about the conference, so she sent him at 8a.m. to a church building far away. then he asked is it too late to go? and she responded, use the light of christ. so he was looking all around bolivia for a church called the light of christ. well anyways he ended up calling and was like I am Bladimir and im super lost. well she felt super dumb but the great thing is is that people who are really prepared forgive you haha. love, me

NUMBER 47 baby!

oh mom i just love you so much. did you know that? and the rest of you guys too i guess ,)

This week really was a better week. seriously. I am very grateful for this. On monday we finally got to teach the Robles family! i think i wrote about them once when i first got here. They´ve got a son named Elder! We taught the whole family on monday and it was so great. I was so grateful for the experience of finally talking to someone with interest. One of the first questions they asked was where can we buy a hymn book? (thats always a good sign).

on tuesday i had an intercambio. the other sister leader came into my zone to do the intercambio with me. Ive got great zone and district leaders right now which is such a blessing. They planned this intercambio so that I could hopefully feel better and not feel so down. sweet huh? well anyways it was a great day. 

so on Wednesday we had a lesson set up for the Robles family though and i made my companion memorize the first vision to say to them. (normally you memorize this in the CCM but she didnt. we also have taught the first vision 2 other times but she just wouldnt memorize it). I told her that the Robles family is too important for her to fake her way through the first vision again. so i demonstrated how to share the first vision with the spirit. I practiced with her. I gave her pep talks. And as we were walking to their house she finally had it down. Unfortunately only the mom was home- her husband was working. But i think this lesson was the most spiritual experience we have had as a companionship. it went great. I think she felt good about finally doing something in a lesson. 

Our ward is definitely getting the mission bug more. ive been praying so hard for this. one family went to pick up an inactive family, and this other family live in the house and this young guy. well they ended up hauling all of them to church! so the young guy has a baptism fecha. we are so excited for this. 

also hna mita (sister living in my house) hast o go to theorabpy for her back, and she gave a book of mormon to the lady. the lady said, members live in my house, but they never invite me! so please, for the love of all that is holy, invite a friend to church this week. 

much love! love hermana elisa black

Monday, August 5, 2013

Perseverar

hey hello howdy

Ok so first off the top line of the key board doesn’t work so i can’t but exclamation points or question marks haha. its funny i never thought how important punctuation was for me until i lost it. That’s how all things in life though are i am learning.

Anyways thanks for helping me get my feet back on the ground a little more this week. This week was actually worse than the other week- we had even less investigators and less lessons. But i know it’s a test of my faith- to see if I will keep going even when I don’t see any results. It’s frustrating because I have so much desire to work and teach and help but there is just nothing happening here. Our ward mission leader runs when he sees us, our bishop just hides. The Jehovahs witnesses knock every door in our area every single morning these days, and our members don’t have time to help us. We have references, but we can never find them. So yeah, I’m just going to say this is my faith building, perseverar hasta el fin area. Which is ok.

I really liked the story mom and Patrice sent. I thought about how much I really truly suffered my first months in the mission, and how all the new girls coming in have it so great now haha. I thought, why did it have to be so hard for me at first. But then I realized that i am ok with the price I paid to know God. I really do know him now. I didn’t before my mission. Not well at least. I was really, really beaten down. I’m so different now haha. But it’s so great. 

Really don’t have anything to report this week. I summed it up in the second paragraph. Oh and elder nelson is just an elder who broke his leg so he has nothing to do but to take our phone calls when we are sick. haha. Our president should be back next week. It’s been hard without him. 

I really just want to work work work work work and help help help help but we end up just walking around a lot. Its stressfull because i am seriously worried about finding everyone that I need to teach. But I am trying so hard not to be stressed out. I love working so very much. Well this is seriously all I can write right now. I am doing good. Thanks for all your help and love and advice and prayers my life is the best  thing ever.

love, hermana elisa black

Friday, July 26, 2013

Keep going even when it's hard

ok hello and howdy!

First off  sorry if this email is hard to understand- the spacebar on this computer is                    messed up. haha. But anyways it sounds like at home was a super fun and adventurous week!    Can talitha ride a 2 wheeler? Or was she pulling the wagon on a 3 wheeler? So weird. She looks so big in the pictures you sent. Speaking of which thanks so oooo much madeline for the  plan de salvacion, talitha for the  drawings, and mom for the pics and      thing from Lula’s funeral.   All of these things are on my desk and wall now. thanks so much! Really enjoyed that lots and lots. also so cool that you are going to go see hna  melissa morris  for her homecoming!!! She sent me pictures of all the  things she is eating  haha. I miss her lots.  The girls in my house last night told me that I need to start trying to be  hna black and not hna morris...I think i must be talking about her a lot and how I want to be like her haha. 

As far as salud goes- i am feeling awesome. i did take the charcoal, along with some other things  perscribed from  Elder nelson, and even went to the clinic because                                               it just wasn’t stopping haha.  But they said I was perfecto. So i asked my zone leader for a blessing. The blessing said  that    because I   decided to use faith, the medicine in me would start to work little by little and that I didn’t need to take anything else! So.. ... I am learning a lot about faith this week. :)        

 on monday I was  kind of frustrated with   trying to do my calling as leader,  have good  logros (number of lessons? I dunno what logros is in english anymore haha)             and train my companion.  But     reading the quote  you sent me mom helped me to remember to take things one day at a time.  Sometimes I get frustrated because I just want the church to work as good here as it does in utah. I just want someone, anyone to                                be a home teacher or a visiting teacher. I know we are far from perfect in utah  haha but like    . ... a lot of things work a lot better  in utah. And i know like the chruch has been in utah for 200 years, and we are  just barely going to get to 50 soon here in bolivia. But sometimes because I’ve seen how the church CAN work i just want to  make everyone here do it in the same way. haha.

But anyways its really going good   here.  FAith though has become big this week for me.  sometimes when   you just  get no no no no no no no no no no day after day you start to get disheartened and lose faith. It’s because you want to protect yourself.  Well at least me.  i don’t want to be sad again, don’t want to get my hopes up, so I think I lose faith because it’s easier to just not believe that the people will progress. When you  really picture someone in white, really believe that they           are  ready, really   put all your heart and soul into helping them and then they don’t except the truth and happiness you have, its hard! And it  really hurts. so I think somet imes I   shut down a little  sometimes. But   you  just gotta keep having faith. gotta keep    believing that there are people here you are meant to teach and baptize.      And sometimes you go weeks without finding them, and if you’re like me you get nervous because you think,   where are the people I promised before this life that  I would find  ? What if i don’t find them ?!   But                   you just  gotta keep going with faith. Trust that the big guy    up above is going to make everything work out. I just have to do my part- which is           open m y mouth and talk to everyone and do my best.  God will do his part  if I let him.

 Anyways this week was also cambios.  I am still with Hermana Barrios ( one month with the same companion if you can believe it ! haha  ) but now there are two more    hermanas in our house that  are also working in our area! One of them is a new  gringa ! hna baldridge. No one can say her name here hahaha.    We went from 2 gringas in this mission to 6 this week!  so that’s cool.                  also thanks to my calling as leader I was                 helping with the cambios.  My favorite part of this was running down the street in front of a taxi with  6 mattresses piled on top. haha  

                              None of our investigatores came to church this  sunday, but we aren’t giving up faith. We will get there. We will find the people ready  and chosen for the gospel.  We choose to be chosen. God is in this work, God is my  captain in chief,  and this is   His work that I am doing. I love it. I love helping others. I love saving the world .   


 thanks for  everything! love, Hermana Elisa Black

Training is hard

hello hello! 

First off iffy computer so no fotos sorry. 

Also other noticias... i dont know if you guys remember that when i was with Hermana Morris in Centenario we found this Catholic priest guy that is like a representative from Rome. Hermana Morris and I only taught him how to pray, and then new hermanas came into that area. Well, he totally got baptized last month. Cool right? And oh the reason why I feel more segure is because we now have cellphones! So that’s nice. 

Bien. Well this week i got pretty disheartened. it’s just kinda hard training (she’s great just a lot of the new latinas think that the mission is like a happy little vacation. In the states, we learn the mission is hard! here everyone tells people that are going to go on missions that is so fun and beautiful and wonderful.). But i really hope this next week is better. 

Like this week we had a family home evening with some members that said they were going to invite the husbands brother who isn’t a member over. Well we went, and they were like "just kidding his brother is actually a member and lives really far away from here". And I’m just like, um... thanks for wasting our time.  

Then we have lots of investigators that are coming to church that just don’t want to get baptized. so like, we are working so hard but they just don’t want to get wet. Sigh. So lots of work with little results right now. 

Wednesday was kinda fun though. I went looking for houses with Hna Ariza and the assistants. We are getting lots of new missionaries this week! Well anyways tuesday in the night there was this helicopter with a search light looking around in our area and the areas around. The driver when we were looking for houses said that the police are looking for two of the last gang members of this columbian gang. They found the boss because he was looking for a house to rent, and the police found all the gang members except 2. Well hermana ariza is columbiano and so is one of the assistants. And what were we doing? Looking for houses to rent. hahaha it was funny. 

Also hermana willard who is amazing is in the usa recovering from breaking her foot last week. poor thing. We now have an elder who is our nurse. And guess who got really sick this week? That’s right me. haha. poor elder nelson. 

This week we found a new family though who have a lot of interest in the strength of youth. It’s a mom with two kids in youngmen/women. People want good things for their families, and I got news for them. We are the only ones who have what they need. Period. They came to church this week and loved it! So we are going to be working hard for Gladys and her family. I just need to stay happy and work hard and we should be good to go. 

Well anyways this is all for today. i love you all so very much. Thanks for being great!


love, hermana elisa black

ONE YEAR MARK!

hi mom and family and friends!

So I’m here in san pedro still. With the same companion, hermana barrios. I know it’s always a shock when things aren’t different haha. Anyways the pictures are of me and my girls here in this house. The one with pizza is last monday, and the other one is us celebrating my one year mark which is the same day as my companions 1 month mark! so that was fun.

Ok well this week was definitely less cold and we enjoyed it (well my companion was almost dead with how hot it was and I was like honey, this is winter here). But today we are feeling winds from the south which means it’s soon gunna be cold. Anyways a little bit about my house where I live: it’s awesome. Definitely the most beautiful house I’ve lived in here. Its right next to the church which is awesome. Also the owner of the house has a parrot, a little black cat, and a bright white bunny with red eyes. I love it. The cat and bunny play together. I’m  teaching the parrot to whistle "woot woot" any time someone says "hermana black". So far its working good! seriously the birds here are super intelligent. Also the other night we were all in one of the bedrooms when hermana ariza gave a little yelp! They were all sitting on the beds and i was sitting on the floor. Well usually when people yelp like that it means mouse! So i got up and turned around faster than rain clouds enter santa cruz. But it was just the bunny. haha. I chased him out. Definitely like the pets of this house better. 

Anyways the new president and his wife got here this week! President and hermana Willard from Arizona. Um they are seriously amazing. They are changing so much about the mission- so much that I knew needed to change for a long time. I am so happy!!!! Ah this week was super stressful because I’m training, opening a new area, doing intercambios, and well it’s a special week for Elisa haha. But i know that little by little things are really going to change here for the good. I know that i definitely got closer to god for all my suffering here, and maybe that’s why I had the president I had. But now with these new changes I’m going to feel so safe, enjoy my time more, and have a lot less stress I think. I’m very very grateful for this. Maybe I just needed to learn and see the difference. But seriously I just cried after our conference with the president on tuesday! The changes are very, very good. 

Anyways we have been struggling with the work here a little right now. We do have lots of references which is incredible. But we are doing a lot of walking and not a lot of entering. I guess i really just need to get over my fear of talking to people on the phone and call people a lot more. But yeah it’s good. I’m also learning humility a lot here haha which is good. I just miss my old zone that started saying "we will go and do the things which Hermana Black commands". haha gotta start from scratch again here. haha no humility is just what I need.

Anyways this is all for today. I’m learning lots and its awesome. Hope california was a blast! love, hermana elisa black  

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Missing Paraiso; changing back to original mission


so hopefully you read my other email first. because now i am in san pedro! but a few house keeping items first... first of all um malorie had a frog? k didnt know that. but im sorry he died i guess. also i got a few dear elders last week from dad and malorie... a lot of the tmie i dont get the ends of the letters. sigh. i dunno maybe its easier just to send everything via email and i can trie to print stuff... its just expensive but i think its more secure...i dunno. also im in the south mission now but i think i wrote that in my other email.

ok back to this week. well all monday we were moving to our new home. i found out why we had to leave paraiso. its because the new asistentas to the president are taking over that ward. sigh. i seriously had a hard time all this week. i miss paraiso so much. also we had two baptisms this week and two more planned for this coming week. hopefully they are taking care of that all. but anyways san pedro is pretty cool. its the best house for hermanas in the mission! becuase its pretty and huge. but its aweful for the cold! and this week is the coldest week of my mission! holy cow it was crazy rainy and cold. thats basically what i have to say about tuesday. so cold and rainy. we are opening this area, which means we dont know anyone. the last missionaries that where here were hna white and hna ordunez, and that was a month ago. (yes everyone thinks its hilarious that hna white left and now they have hna black). but anyways we are trying to get to know the area and the people as fast as we can so that we can work here!


so with all the cold and rain and leaving paraiso, i kind of had a slumpy attitude. but its getting better. saturday we had a baptism! the hermanas before taught her everything, we just basically came in and baptised her. she is awesome. shes a recently devorced mom with three cute little kids, including a baby of 4 months. she is amazing. on sunday we were waiting for her to come in so that she could get the holy ghost, but she still wasnt there when we finished the santa cena. so we finished that and the 2ndo councilor was like one of the young people go and get the new convert. and i was like well no one knows where she lives except us. so we got up and ran to her house. its about 7 blocks from the church. we knocked on her door and these kids of the neighbor that lives in her house was like "she left". and i was like no! you´ve got to be kidding me! so we ran (well walked... we were pretty dead from running) back to the church. when we walked in one of the members was coming out and he was like where have you guys been? she was just in the bathroom. so yeah... everyone somehow knew she was there except me. probably i was just anxious and so i didnt understand the 2nt coucilor. thats what happens with the gift of tongues. if you dont have the spirit (and you only have the spirit when your not freaking out) you dont understand. so that was that experience. so embarrassing, because always on the first day that the missionaries enter a ward, you always give your testimony. so they also called us up and we werent there. haha.


anyways also it was the area san pedros birthday on saturday so the other picture im sending is of people dancing in my street. every area has a different name, and so does every s treet. and when its the birthday of your street or area, theres always a party. well i happen to be in san pedro and its the area of san pedros birthday. i dunno how everyone keeps the parties straight here, because there is a ton!!! some of the streets its easy to tell when its its birthday, because the streets name is 24 de novembre. i dunno how anyone keeps anythning else straight. but anyways theres always a party in bolivia. this one almost made us late to get in our house on time, but it was super fun i loved it. always parades. everyone likes to dress up here! 

oh also on wednesday i had another intercambio. i love doing intercambios. its fun to leave and help out other people. its always for 24 hours, so i even sleep over. it was fun because it was an intercambio with two companerismos, and hermana morris was with the other companion. so i got to see her for my last time i think before she goes back home. 

anyways lots of love and stuff from me this week. hopefully you get these emails today! love, hermana elisa black  

ps oh yeah happy 4th of july and completion of one year in the mission! wow its nuts isnt it? love, me


Surprise Transfer: Staying in Mission Santa Cruz

ok so today i am leaving Paraiso!! NO!!! I am so dang sad i cant even
tell you! (ps the n key doesnt work very good on this computer so
sorry if this letter is loco). seriously i am so sad. also i got a new
companion o thursday. her name is HNA barrios and she is from la paz
bolivia. 7 missionaries came in this week. but presidet didnt know!
they were sitting in the airport for a long time util they were
finally able to contact the mission. and well im trainig leader so the
one sister that came in is with me. so basically i am training three
missionaries in my house- hna barrios, choque, and maximiliano. i am
pretty stressed out. its a really good thing maximiliano is AMAZING.
But yeah now i am leavig with hna barrios to go to the ward San Pedro
which is in the mission santa cruz! so yeah changing missions again.
sigh. 

but the conference was amazing! oh man i had a hard time not saying I
TOLD YOU SO! to all of my zone. they´ve been making fun of me for all
my ideas with mormon.org. now they are all saying "sorry! now we know
it was revelation!". yeah. thats right. listen to hermana black. well
now im going to a new mission... hopefully they will follow through
with all of my ideas in this mission. ha. things are just crazy here i think because we are
splitting the mssion and my prez is leaving. so i really duno if my
address will change or aything. i didnt see you guys but i knew you
were singing to me mom. so thanks very much!

also GABRIELA fernandez got baptized this week! oh it was so great! we
had so much of her family at the baptism. little by little they are
going to make it. the dad bawled durig the special number ( i am a
child of god.) and he even gave the closing prayer! it was awesome. i
am so happy for them, but sad becuase not only am i leaving paraiso,
but no knew missionaries are going to enter! and we have a baptism lined
up for this saterday and two for the next, and more promising people!
we are just booming here, and i know that much of this is becuase the
ward is reallly getting on the ball. now after this conference its just
going to explode! and there are no missionaries. well my zone leaders
are just going to have to visit every single day, because im serious
we have so many people! sigh. well its ok. seriously i put so much
into this ward. i was sure i was going to be here for a while. now im
saying my good byes. i had last night and this morning to pack, but
instead i wrote letters to people. investigators and members. well
i´ll just have to pack in 20 minutes. whats new? ha.

this week i also did an itercambio which was fun! i love my calling. i
didn't realize that i really do have a lot of experience, but when i was
with these two sisters i was really able to help them lots! so that
was cool. i was seriously all over the place this week. also it is
FREEZING HERE! ah! holy cow! and no one has heat. i am SO grateful for
thermal garments! and i almost didnt bring any! wow. listen to the
profet. bring everything that your calling says to bring. also im
grateful for girls camp- it prepared me for the long cold nights.
thats so great that maddie and afton had fun this week at grils camp-
cat wait to hear about it!

um what else... i forgot to write out things that i want to write home
about this week... iwas seriously all over the place haha. there aren't
any mice any more- we got our door fixed. also our shower didnt have
hot water till two days ago so that was an adventure. sorry i dont
have pictures- i dont trust this computer haha. but yeah hopefully i
will be a little less stressed in my new area...but probably shouldnt
count on it. ha. well love ya all lots ad lots ad espero que todo esta
bien!

con amor,
hermana elisa black

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Changing to Santa Cruz Norte Mission starting in July!

hello hello family!

Thanks for letting me know about everything that’s going on. What a
week. I definitely am going to miss Lula. It’s interesting- I found
myself talking about her a lot this week. Like yesterday we helped a
lady with her laundry, and i told her about how my great grandma washed
and ironed clothes when she lived in Guatemala. I’m glad everything
went well this week for her. I also just got a letter from Grandma
today (yes grandma I got your letter for my birthday thanks so very
very much!) and it said that Lula always asks about me. She’s such a
great lady and I’m glad she is in more peace right now. One of my
favorite scriptures is Alma 40:11 which talks about how right after we
pass over, we are met with God. I know that that’s where Lula is right
now.

Also happy father’s day dad! I hope you had a great day yesterday. I
love you so much!



Algunas cosas: so this foto is me and hna maximiliano my companion. We
took this picture just barely. We are both rather bad at remembering
to take fotos haha. But she is really cool. We think alike sometimes-
we wore almost the exact same outfit one day which was kinda funny.
Also I got bessie´s letter and pictures this week! Thanks so much! It
was so great to get some pictures of barelake- and I finally could
prove to hna morris that my grandma is latina! haha. Also i got the
pics of trevs grad and easter! Man my family is so attractive! Oh and I’m in
mission santa cruz norte! My new president is from Arequipa, Peru! He
will be here the first week of July i think.

Ok so this week I had two conferencias. On tuesday it was zone leaders
conference,and wednesday was like a day of practicas with all the
people that are in mission norte. Always for these conferences we go
out to eat. We usually all walk, but because there was only four
hermanas (hna morris, yo, the other hermana trainer and her companion)
we got to ride in the car of president on tuesday. While we were
driving I saw this monkey running in the street! Then it jumped up a
wall and into a tree. Good ol´ sur america. Monkeys just runnin around
all the time. haha. On wednesday my companion and i left late to go to
the lunch because we went to the bathroom. So us and 6 elders all left
together. We walked to where we thought lunch was, and no one was
there! Well long story short eventually we found were everyone was and
they called us the 8 virgins without oil or something like that haha.

bien. Then thursday was the regular zone meeting in the morning. Well
you know you´re getting good at spanish when you speak your mind in
front of 20 latins...hehe. I was a little annoyed with some of the
elders but we talked it out and we are doing better. They are a lot
nicer now. Their future wives will thank me as Hna Morris says hahaha.
But I was just happy I have the spanish to say how I feel now. It’s
really nice. haha.

Well this week we had fun with mice again... the dueno of the house
(the boss of the house? uh oh forgetting english haha) came and fixed
the door, but this week was cold so they are trying really hard to get
in the house. The other hermanas entered the house and one ran in! But
then they turned on the light and it ran out. They hurried and closed
the door, but they said that there was a bunch of mice just running
in front of the door after that. (The door is glass so we can see out.)
they said there are big ones and little ones and tons of them! So...
we are going to buy some more venum. haha. Oh mice. "it’s ok to be
friends with a mouse" as Talitha would say. :)

well this week was tough, but some good things are happening. Gabriela
was finally interviewed, and will be getting baptized friday, 21 of
june. We are still working on activating all of her family, but the
shields are coming down and I am excited for them. I love the
Fernandez family so much its crazy. Didn’t know it was possible to love
people like this. Also speaking of families I love, although we (the
missionaries) can’t really visit the Vasconcelos family anymore, one of
the powerful families in our ward went and visited them this week. I
also bought a Portuguese book of mormon and dropped it off at their
door. One day they will come into the fold. And well the third family
that I love so much here is the Choque family. I think i wrote about
them last week... almost all of them are members except Gustavo (16
yrs old) and the dad. Gustavo will be getting baptized the first week
of July! He is progressing well. He told his dad something like "hey
dad, you´re going to be the only one in this family who isn’t mormon.
You should probably just join ok?" haha so we are helping this family.
They are so sweet and great. I just love working with families. It’s
seriously the greatest.

Also we had another lady just come into the church because she felt it
was right. We wrote down her direction and phone number, but we haven’t
been able to find her... so I’m worried about that. I’m thinking she
didn’t exactly give us her correct address. Sometimes i think i scare
people with my enthusiasm...gotta work on that. But when we were
looking for her this man was like "where´s your church and what time
is it at?" well turns out he is looking for our church specifically
and wants a book of mormon! So we will be visiting him and his two
kids this week. He is a single dad with two kids in young mens age. So
we are looking forward to teaching them!

Anyways i know there is a lot of power in prayer. I know that families
are really the ultimate thing for happiness. Without a family, you
can’t have complete joy and cant progress completely. seriously working
with all of these families I’m learning so much about families, and
that really without Christ, and following his teachings, families
just won’t be able to withstand the darts and winds of this world
(helaman 5:12 is our favorite scripture these days).

Well anyways love you all lots. I’m happy to be here even though
sometimes its super hard. I just have so much desire to help people
that the hard stuff is worth it when we can help people understand the
good news that when we do five simple things, Christ has power to save
us.

Thanks for being the best family and friends ever!

love, Hermana Elisa Black

Friday, June 14, 2013

SIX Companions

Ok so maybe this letter is going to be a little short again...sorry. hehe... we will see. at least you have two missionaries to read about now. :)
Anyways the pictures are the baptism of Beismar and Me with Hna Huenchur, Hna Choque, and Hna Ariza (from Columbia). Yeah i had 6 different companions this week. haha lemme explain...



So monday was pretty normal. We went and bought winter clothes. Thanks so much for the money! I love all my winter clothes. It’s so cheap here- i bought like a bunch of cute winter coats. (Sorry dad I’m awful with money...but how much do i have left in my account?) Anyways so monday was fun. My companions were Hna Huenchur and Hna Choque.

Then on tuesday one of the assistants called me at 6:34 in the morning to tell me that a sister from Columbia just got her visa, but the cambios aren’t until thursday, so she would be my temporary companion for 24 hours. Hna Ariza was super cool. I love how people from Columbia talk. It’s like Jamaican spanish. haha. So basically we did things like change money, i taught her about santa cruz, and we went to a few appointments.

Wednesday i ended up having to take Hna Ariza to all the migration stuff. Remember all that first day stuff i did? Like give blood and lots of fingerprints? yeah stuff like that. It was kind of cool to get to do it all again. At the time, i was like in shock, but now I’m like, "aaaawwww first day!" haha. Here i got to meet Hna Buckley and Hna Wolfe and Elder Neuhaus, missionaries from malories district in Peru! Aw it was so great! Hna Buckley explained to me that Malorie was great- even though malorie locked her in a closet once. haha. It was cool to talk to them, and get a letter from malorie via missionaries! Also so cool that malories companion is from Guatamala! There is only one person from guatamala in my mission that i know of,and he’s an elder. He is constantly talking about the food from guatamala and how much he misses it. I’m the only one that can sympathize with him haha! But its true. guatamala food is the best!!

Speaking of letters only afton and talitha got letters from me? i sent one to madeline and trevor too. Also did you get my pictures in the letter with letters for my cousins inside? And there should have been two of those... also my face is perfectly clear now, but my analysis for it won’t be here till thursday. haha. Must be the power of prayer or somethin.

Oh also my bishop says hi. Did i ever tell trevor that my bishops name is Grover? Also his son is named grover and he’s our ward mission leader. haha. lots of Grovers. 

Ok moving on again...so then thursday. I thought that i was going to be with Hna Choque and Hna Huenchur again but nope! Surprise! My new companion is Hna Maximiliano!! She is from Peru. She just got here this week, but she´s been out for 3 months in the mission field. She was waiting for a visa too. It’s getting harder and harder to enter bolivia. (bolivia follows Venesuela in things like this). Anyways she’s about to turn 27 and she’s super cool. Also she is from Peru so i love her. haha. I just love everything about Peru. And I’ve always wanted a companion from Peru! And her name rocks. so yeah it’s pretty sweet. 

So friday, saturday, and sunday were normal days. We are teaching right now Gabriela Fernandez again- her baptism is now scheduled for 21 de junio. We are going to work hard with them again. Also Gustavo is a sixteen year old and almost all of his family is members. He’s been going to seminary on and off for 3 weeks now and we finally got him to listen to us. So we should be baptizing him soon. He wants to get baptized. I love teaching his family- they remind me of my family kind of, because they are always laughing and cracking jokes. 

The baptism of Beismar was great. He tried to give his testimony at the end but he just got super emotional. He´s a great kid. Hopefully we will get him thinking about a mission soon! 

This ward is seriously great. Sunday morning instead of having ward council everyone left to go and bring investigators and less active members to the church. Also one of our missionaries of the ward wrote her testimony on 16 pieces of paper with a liahona and gave this out to people on the street! She is amazing.

Well the work here is good. The church is true. Seriously the mission is the best thing to help you grow in the gospel. I’m so glad I’m here. 7 months will go by fast i think. 

much love, Hermana Elisa Black 


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Sketchy Internet

hello!

So sorry the internet has been crazy today! Usually we go to this mercado that has lots of computers, but today it was closed. So then we went to this other street with internet cafes but today the police decided to come and shut them down for being illegal haha. Of all the days to have the police come. Well now we are at another internet cafe, and hopefully we don’t get kicked out! But it’s going very slow so sorry. And mom, sorry my letter was short, but i don’t think it has to do with the fact that i can write friends. We were given more time to write!

So a few things: are you guys sending malories letters via dearelder? Cause I’m not getting them... also congrats trevor on everything this week! Wow so cool! I’m so proud of you and happy for you! i love that you guys did a dance. That’s so my type of thing to do and i love it haha. Also hna choque has been a member all her life, also hna huenchur, who says thanks! She is so excited to go to byu. She talks really great english.

Ok so this week no fotos. Sorry but this internet is kind of sketchy and i don’t want to mess up my camera. Can that happen? Can you mess up your camera from a computer? I don’t even know.

But anyways so this week i was at the dermatologist and clinic a lot. I’m growing some kind of bacteria on my face. haha. It started out small, but it keeps growing and is now on different parts of my face! But it’s all just part of the mission experience here in bolivia. It’s getting a lot better now and has started going away so no fear. at least i didn’t get bit in the face by a dog like Hna Morris (sorry mom of hna morris for writing that she was in the clinic the other week... didn’t mean to freak you out!). We are all recovering nicely though and all is well. Yes i have ongaurd :)

so we are having some awesome success here in paraiso. We are teaching about 10 FAMILIES right now and it is just so fantastic! We are working our little tails off. Also this week Beismar will be getting baptized. He´s almost 18 and he´s been living with his aunt and uncle who are members. We taught him lots all week, but he just wasn’t feeling as secure as he wanted. But we prayed and prayed and prayed. and saturday night, he had a dream about us! In the dream, hna huenchur told him that he missed his opportunity, and now he can’t be baptized. He said that in his dream I kept saying "no its ok" but hna huenchur was like no its passed the time! And well somehow this was the answer he was looking for and he is very excited for his baptism! He’s got tons of friends in the ward. So yeah that’s great.

Gabriela Fernandez i think is going to have to wait an extra week to get baptized because they have missed church these last two weeks. The dad is in the hospital right now and we are hoping that with his health failing he will have greater desire to come back to church.

We brought a mom to church yesterday. Her name is Cynthia. She was born catholic, raised jehova witness, and went to an evangelica church when she was 20ish. Now she is a single mom with two daughters. She came to church, and then we visited her in the afternoon. We explained a lot about joseph smith and the restauracion and after she was like, "well thank you but i think i am just going to go back to the evangelica church and be really active". But unfortunately she was talking to two missionaries who are sick of not having baptisms. We didn’t leave it at that. I am so tired of losing my brothers and sisters. hna huenchur feels the same and well hermana choque she is just going to have to come with us in these things. We bore powerful testimony, committed her to pray about the church, and set a baptism date. We are talking to so many families these days which is challenging, but we are working so hard and praying so much. They might have to send me home in pieces in 7 months (only 7 months!!!!!! aaaaah!!!!) because all my blood sweat and tears (and skin from my face haha) are here in paraiso.

Oh btw the mission will be splitting this week. So i might be in mission santa cruz norte or i might still be in santa cruz mission. Paraiso is in the north mission so if im still in paraiso next week, that will be my new mission. 

Anyways love the mission. It’s the best thing ever for my life. Also I’m obsessed with
mormon.org these days. I feel like im supposed to bring it to bolivia even though i don’t know much about it haha. But like sometimes i can’t sleep at night because I’m just thinking of so many ideas and things these days. Its great but it’s hard.

Ok sorry mom its short again this week. But i have to write good letters to president these days too. haha.

I love you all so much and i love reading about you all. Thanks for everything!

love, hermanana elisa black