Tuesday, April 30, 2013

ah!!! family aqui in south america!! woot!

hello hello!!

Ah i am so excited for malorie to be here THIS WEEK!! Holy cow nuts!!!
I am just giddy. The ccm in Peru is SO much better than Provo! In my
humble opinion. wow! I can’t help but think mom how much of a blessing
getting stuck in a bunch of airports is. She hopefully won’t be so lost
and shocked and confused in the airport in Peru! Oh the peru airport.
so many of my favorite experiences happened in Peru. Seems like
yesterday.  Ok enough of that. Ah i am just so excited! Is she flying
out with other missionaries? Oh But mom what is malories direction for
the ccm and mission? Also because malorie will be in the ccm in Peru,
theres a boy in my ward that will be joining her the week Michaela
goes in (is she going to ccm in peru too?). So I’m going to send him
with a letter to you mal, so look for Elder Chino! Too cool. Also i
think I’ve figured out the best way to send our weekly reports to
each other. Mal and I can email each other, but there just isn’t a lot
of time! This might be too complicated, but could you mom or dad send
our letters to each other via dearelder? Especially when she is in the
ccm she just won’t be able to read anything i email. Is that too
complicated? Let me know. Also, all the bishops and leaders are on
fire after having Elder Bednar here. My bishop wants to make a ward
directory. Is there any way you could email me pages of the ward
directory we have in provo? Sorry i know this is lots and this week is
already crazy enough! As far as hangers go: yes bring hangers- the
thinner the better :) also thanks so very much for the dinero!! I’m
going to have to go buy some warm clothes now. I don’t really know when
it will hit- June July and august are the coldest months but may is
supposed to be pretty cold this year too based on the amount of rain
and cold days we´ve been having (which really haven’t been much yet but
i guess more than usual). Also sorry no pictures. I have a lot of good
ones but again i have a computer without the ability to send pics.

Ok ok moving on. So on monday we had an awesome FHE with a family of
different levels of inactivity and membership. It’s this really awesome
family- a grandma with 3 sons i think and their kids and other
assortment of cousins. It’s the family of Elder Chino that malorie is
going to meet. He is the only one super active, but there are others
that come some times. Anyways we explained part of the family a
proclamation to the world to them. We used our white board to draw a
tree. We asked what "fruits" do you want in your family? We drew
fruits of unity, love, and happiness, etc. then we said well how do we
get those fruits? Then we drew on the roots what things we need to do
to get those fruits: things like going to church, family prayer, etc.
It was incredible! It’s so simple. But one of the dads was like "whoa
the gospel makes sense now!" oh i cannot even begin to describe how
great that is to hear that! Our hearts were full when we walked home
that night.

Tuesday....door knocking... i actually love door knocking. I had to
tell myself i love it for a couple of weeks at the beginning of my
mission, but now I really do.

Wednesday- we tried singing in a park together. We were in the middle
of the third line of a beautiful duet of all creatures of our god and
king when some man came up and was like "stop singing. i need money to
go somewhere. Give me money to go on the bus". We were like we don’t
have money but he started getting really pushy so we ran away. haha.
We are trying hard to figure out what to do with our talents we’ve been
blessed with. That wasn’t the right choice but at least we are trying
right? haha

Thursday - using our "lista de accion" (dunno what this is in english)
we found a family that has a 9 year old daughter that isn’t baptized.
So we visited this family. It’s a family a lot like the family of Laura
that Hermana Morris and i taught. It’s a family of 8 kids, this 9 year
old is the youngest. All are super inactive except one daughter who
lives in another part of santa cruz. We are going to try hard to
activate them and baptize Gabriela :)

Friday- we felt like we should visit Edith again (we sang I believe in
Christ to her and she couldn’t stop crying last week). She let us in,
and we talked lots to her. We were really excited- she´s actually very
humble, she just puts on a face like she is tough but we just have to
be a little persistent and she lets us in. We were having a great
lesson and then we asked her to be baptized. Well she told us that she
actually went to the River Jordan in Israel (Israel right? well
where ever) and was baptized. So she isn’t quite as enthusiastic about
our humble fonts. But we will see. Every time we sing with her the
spirit is so strong. That’s why she keeps listening to us.

Saturday- 3 hours with elder bednar!!! Wow. I can really tell that I’ve
matured spiritually because when Elder Christopherson came to the ccm,
i was like "cool an apostle!" but this saturday with Elder Bednar I
was just full of joy! The 3 hours were like 20 minutes. I wish i could
write everything I want to here, but I’m almost out of time! One of my
favorite things he said though was, if you don’t get the blessings you
think you should get, will you keep doing what’s right? Will you keep
being obedient today? This week? Your mission? Your whole life? Does
your faith depend on the results YOU think YOU should get? Ah love it.
It reminded me of your discipleship meter dad :)

Anyways Carlos was interviewed sunday and will be baptized this
saturday. He is a great kid. In the first lessons he was super serious
and i was kind of scared of him haha. But now he is happy and laughs
and is actually really funny. His life has changed and it’s a beautiful
thing to witness.

Well hopefully we get in a couple of houses for a second time this
week. We  are pretty good at getting into houses for a first lesson,
but no one is ever home for the second visit! But we will get there. I
have so much energy to go go go and help the Lord with this work!
(Even though we have now killed two mice in our house. and when I say
we I mean my companion haha).

Well here’s me sending lots of love to provo and peru!!!

love, Hermna BLack

gr computer :(

hello fam!
so this computer can attach pictures. its just that i cant write and upload at the same time so not going to send any today sorry. i sent some pics in the mail though, along with a letter to the families of Welch, Wagstaff, and Young because i dont have their addresses. hopefully all that makes it home. also im happy that all is well for mal! Is michaela going to peru? because i want to send her a card too through this kid in my ward who will be entering the ccm soon with them.
thanks so much for the birthday money! also im pretty sure i just recieved a bday package from the woods in orem and marivel- thank you thank you! also congrats on graduating this week SUU friends, and also felizidades to Michelle and Brian on getting married this week! wow. :)
also no i dont need more drops. i got an empty envelope from afton last week :( i dunno where the letter is. also Maria Torrez, if you remember her from when i was in Centenario wth hmna Morris, got baptized!!! yay! also my bishop here says hello. he says i look like one of the wives of a past mission president here in santa cruz. Prezident Cranny or someting like that.
ok so summery of this week: Hna Michel y Hermana Black worked so hard monday through wednesday that they had super high logros and blew everyones minds. then they were both sick on thrusday but didnt want to admit it. sothey kept working. and working. both telling the other to call hermana calderon and say that they are sick. well finally hermana black woke up sunday morning and could barely get out of bed. so she called hermana calderon. haha. im super fine now. we just slept all sunday. my companion is doing really bad though, we went to the clinic this morning. we get the results after we are done here at the internet.
ok but also high lights this week: baptism of Carlos!!!! it was so great. his friend baptized him. they have only been friends for two months, becuase thats how long carlos has been going to church. but they are inseperable now. its like marivel and i- its like we were planned to know each other since the preexistence, to help build each other up spiritually here on earth. now they are both preparing to go on missions! anyways it was a great day. Hna Michel and iwere both crying (whether that was the spirit or because we were sick i dunno haha)
ok so yeah seriously good week. we are teaching right now a family from Russia and another from Brazil. Um yes, 100% Russian! too cool. Anyways its so exciting to be teaching FAMILIES. The russian family isnt quite as into it yet. But the family from Brazil (ok so only the dad is from Brazil) is progressing. The night after we met the mom of the brazil family, she had a dream where her dad (who has been dead for 4 years) said that he is in hell waiting to be helped. we were definitely inspired to teach plan de salvacion first (usually its restauracion first) and she just bawled when we told her that her dad can still make it to the celestial kingdom with her family. the only thing is that they didnt make it to church yesturday... so thats were it gets hard. theyve got to keep commitments. but we are praying and working hard for them!
so sunday we only went for sacrament meeting for the confirmation of Carlos. The only other investigators that came were Gabriela Fermandez- that little nine year old with her 13 year old brother who is a member. He brought his sister, along with two little friends they have that are age 9 and 10. it was so cute- we led them like little ducklings to primary. Unfortunately we left after that. Its going to be super hard to activate this family i think... but maybe with the valience of thier kids they wll be lead back into the fold. its just so hard to baptize kids without parents that will be active.
anyways this was my week this week. I really liked reading in Alma 34:38 where it takes about that we should live every day in "Action of Gratitud" (ok thats translating into inglish i dunno if thats exactly what it says). but i really just like that it talks about that our gratitud for the lord should lead us  to action. if we are thankful, what are we doing about it? anways love that.
well sorry i dont have pictures to send yet again. i cant wait till i can show you some of the movies that i have though- ive got a good one of my companion killing a mouse in our house with a broom. she´s hard core.
i love you all so much and really hope that all is well. I love this church. I love utah. I love santa cruz. I love my family. I love my life. (i feel like that little boy Dash on the movie incredibles that is just so happy with this family that he just says "i love our family" and lays back on the car seat) haha.
ok well thats all for this week. Have a great week!

love, Hermana Black

Elder Bednar is coming...

hello hello!

Well this was an interesting week. It was fun, and we worked a lot,
but we aren’t seeing many fruits of our labors lately.

But anyways a couple of things: i haven’t been able to send Trevor’s
birthday card yet! sorry Trev. Hopefully I’ll get that in the mail next
week and you’ll get it in May sometime. I did try. Also I got a package
from Sylvia and Bryans family! Thanks so much! My companion and i love
it! :) Also, i don’t think i have an exact release date, especially
because we have army kids coming in almost weekly so transfers are
weird right now (oh by the way if you are a misionero age 18, or
misionara under age 21, you are considered part of the Army of
God/Helaman). But my foto is up under the month of January, so i am
planned to go home then. But we will have new presidents by the end of
the year so who knows? So yeah that’s that. My guess for Trevor:
Russia, Rhode Island. OH OH also, the son of our pensionista served
with Paul my cousin in Honduras! Cool huh? They weren’t ever companions
but Paul was his first zone leader.

Ok. So time is moving super duper fast. When people say that once
you’re half way your mission goes by fast, i was like yeah that makes
sense. But i wasn’t expecting to basically blink and be in April! And
the MIDDLE of April! Holy cow im still in march! haha. But yeah it’s
kinda awesome and scary at the same time.

Monday was fun- we played Wally Ball. It is so much more fun with
latinos, because they use their feet. haha. We had a lot of fun.

Tuesday we had a one hour reunion with the President. Him and his wife
were just in salt lake for a week! Anyways it was an awesome
conference all about if you want more faith, be obedient! We never
have to question if the apostles are obedient. Obedience brings faith.
Also I’m learning a lot more about the importance of being self
motivated in the mission. No one makes me learn spanish. No one
teaches me how to teach. No one is teaching me how to be a trainer.
You’ve just got to start doing stuff yourself. Sometimes i don’t like
this- I’d rather have someone tell me how to do things, so that i do
things ´right´. But when we take the initiative, we are learning about
how to be more like God, because no one tells him what to do.anyways
it was an awesome conference and i am super motivated!

Wednesday my companion tried to get a starfruit out of a tree and it
fell and hit her in the face haha. That’s all i remember for wednesday
oops haha.

Thursday we couldn’t do much- my companions leg was doing really bad.

Friday we had some problems with the area with the other hermanas that
are serving here. We were confused and everyone was kind of mad at
each other. But on sunday we realized that our ward mission leader has
been starting subtle things between us. So now we are really united as
misioneras, and need a new ward mission leader. haha thats the long
story short.

Saturday we had an awesome lesson with Carlos about a lot of the big
commandments. it all worked out so perfectly: I felt strongly that we
should make his friend in the ward come to the lesson (normally we
just invite a sister because we can’t teach hombres alone.). We ended up
getting a couple of friends in the lesson because we did the lesson
right after a baptism. Well it was perfect- they would all give their
own testimony and experiences about every commandment and it helped
Carlos not only understand the importance, but see that this is what
his friends and peers live and love. It’s so important to be a friend
to people who are investigating the church! Unfortunately though we
wont be having his baptism this week, but next week. it’s because....
Elder Bednar will be coming to our church building this weekend! So...
that’s kind of important. We´ve been getting everything ready. It’s
amazing the excitement here. To have an apostle walk the streets where
i walk every day is amazing. To have him see what i see here every day
is like... i dunno. But its cool and im excited.

Sunday our only investigator was Carlos. I dunno what happened with
our Miracle lady Beti who thought we were jehovas witnessess. We are
going to visit her today. Oh and the lady we sang to and wanted us to
teach her family- well her pastor said we were lairs or something like
that so i guess that’s not going to happen. So this week we worked hard
with out much fruits...yet. We are doing good though. We are getting
better and better at teaching together. I seriously cannot believe how
fast time is moving now!

Mal- I’m so excited for you to join the field! I’ve been trying to think
of some advice to give. The best thing i can think of, is just take it
one day at a time. Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in thinking "I
can’t do this for another 15 months!" or 10 months, or whatever it is.
But every time I think, ok can I just do it today? The answer is
always yes. And then i always ask, can i do my BEST just for today?
And incredibly, the answer is always yes. The mission is awesome. Don’t
waste a moment, but enjoy it too. Don’t get stressed. If you start get
stressed, stop and do something different. Take a moment to get on the
right page again. That’s part of doing your best: knowing your limits
and how to improve little by little not chunk by chunk. 2 nephi 30:28
(I think that’s what it is- line upon line) is one of my favorites. :)

Anyways this is an amazing time to be members of the church. I love
you all so much!

hermana black

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


ok so hello everyone!!

Well so much has been going on! Hopefully i can get some more details
in today. First thing: we are in a different internet cafe but of
course I’m sitting at the one computer that can’t send pictures. Darn!

Ok well right now im in the ward, Paraíso, stake Paraíso. haha yup I’m
in Paradise! It’s pretty great here. Yes mom I got your easter package
one week before easter! That was awesome. I loved it thank you! I got
everything in it too. Everyone loves the chair cover haha i haven’t
removed it yet. Also Hermana Huenchur had this amazing idea- she made
a white board out of a laminated white piece of paper! It’s so smart!
Its light and works so well!!! I definitely recommend it to any
missionary. Also,I think i saw my cousin Paul in the choir on saturday
in conference. Yeah? We did get to watch conference- every session. I
definitely understood loads more this time, but I’m still looking
forward to getting my english liahona in like 3 months. haha. I almost
started crying for joy when I heard the news about the Cedar City
temple!!!!! Seriously I cannot wait!!!! Ah I love Cedar City! We are
all praying hard here in Bolivia that this country will receive a
second temple. I almost feel guilty every time I talk about utah
temples. Utah and Santa Cruz have about the same amount of people, and
we have almost 15 temples. Santa Cruz doesn’t have one- the closest is
8 hours away! But there are rumors that the church is buying lots of
land close by. Everyone was holding hands and we were all so hopefull
when the prophet announced the temples. Well maybe next conference!
Also I didn’t know that about President Calderon! Ah so cool! He is
seriously an amazing man. He missed 2 of his kid’s weddings while they
have been serving here. He is so dedicated to the Lord. Also Hermana
Calderon knows the scriptures probably better than anyone else in
South America. They are seriously one of my favorite couples ever!!!
As far as splitting the mission goes- I will finish my mission in
either mission santa cruz north, or santa cruz south. The change will
happen in July, and if I’m in the north, my mission will be for the
north, and the same if I’m in the south. We aren’t sure yet if there are
going to be hermanas in the north mission- it depends on the new
president. If so, he will likely send us to places out of the city,
because only two stakes of the city santa cruz are going to be in the
north mission. Anyways that’s all i know right now.

Ok so this week.... man i dunno where to begin. We have one 17 year
old who is going to be baptized on the 20th of this month. We worked
hard to get his mom to sign the permission form. But she finally did!
Normally baptizing people under 18 is discouraged because the biggest
problem for the church in south america is less actives. Only 16/100
stay active!!!! Ah! So yeah. But Carlos goes to church every week,
every activity, and was taking tons of notes all conference. We are
preparing him to go on a mission already! He is awesome. It’s going to
be so cool to have a convert on the mission! He will be leaving next
year a little after i get back from my mission.

My companion has been really stressed this week- we found out that her
grandma is in the hospital, and isn’t doing well. She’s only been out
for almost 2 months, and i can easily remember how hard it is not to
think about family, especially when starting the mission. We are
definitely doing better as a companionship though. We´ve talked a lot,
and our lessons are getting better. We sing constantly. She was in the
top five in the latin american idol not too long ago! She seriously
sings so good and it’s so fun! Last night for example after conference,
we knocked on this lady´s door, and entered in. We sang I believe in
Christ and she just started bawling!  She wants us to teach her
family. Our voices might be a little too powerful... hahah just
kidding. But it’s not every cambio you get a companion who has sang for
all of latin america. im trying to think of all the ways we can use
our talents together to move the work along here in Paradise. hehe.

Well I completed my half way mark today!!!! The traditional thing to
do for hermanas here when you reach 9 months is to take a picture with
one of the trees in santa cruz. Why? Because all the trees are shaped
like pregnant ladies. haha. I wish I could send pictures today.
Hopefully next week! But yeah can you believe I’m on the downhill
slope now? Wow i cant! There is so much to do, so many people to find!
Unfortunately when it rains in santa cruz, everyone is lazy. no one
wants to go to work, and no one wants to answer thier doors. So we did
a lot of singin´ in the streets with our umbrellas. We get along well.

We also have a mom with two little girls and her niece that came to
conference, the last session on saturday. We are super excited for
her. Can I just say I loved elder bednars talk? When I was younger, i
used to think, why so often do the apostles just talk about the
basics? Why don’t they give some mind blowing new stuff I’ve never heard
before? But being a missionary I couldn’t be more grateful for the
straightforward, doctrinal lessons that they teach. I thought about
all the investigators around the world listening, and couldn’t be more
grateful for the lessons of the apostles for them. Also, because I’m
more spiritually prepared, I get more out of conference too. I was
literally skipping to conference every session. I LOVE IT! Anyways one
of the sisters in the ward brought a bunch of her friends (2o years
old) and they all loved elder bednars talk. no one has ever taught
them the ley de castidad, and they want to know more. Anyways loved

well gotta go but i love you all so much!!

love hermana black

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Crazy week

hello family!

So it’s so great to hear that Easter was awesome. I love Easter! But
lemme tell you about my crazy week...

So monday we had an activity with another zone and it wasn’t futbol for
once! it was....baseball! boo... hahaha. Only the gringos and those
from the dominican republic knew how to play. I didn’t play because i
don’t like baseball. But i ended up coaching my team (my zone is almost
completely latin and the other team was almost entirely tall gringos
that won their state championships). I was really good at yelling
"CORRE CORRE CORRE!" and "A FUERA A FUERA!!!" I decided that im
excited to be a sports mom. It’s fun yelling at people from the

Well tuesday was a pretty boring day. we only had one lesson. I tried
to talk as nice as i could to my companion about maybe we need to try
to work a little harder. She ended up yelling and crying... oops. i
just sat there and let her rip on me. But then that night we got a
call... interviews with president! Ah i couldn’t sleep. I didnt know
what i was going to say to him. So i just tried to pray and pray.

Wednesday- well we had interviews in the morning. I was worried all
morning until i got to the offices. Then the spirit just told me "dont
worry about it- just go in there". So i did. i figured i wouldnt say
anything about her. But he knew somehow. Mission Presidents are
seriously the coolest people ever. They know everything important.
Anyways he told me, "I know how we are going to fix this problem.
CAMBIOS!" and i was like "no no i don’t want to run away from my
problems." and then he was like "no no it’s not that. It’s that we need
to get a sister out of her zone right now. Ready to train?" so yeah
that’s how that went down.

Thursday- so now im in a new zone, and we can’t send pictures on these
computers, so i can’t send a pictures of my new companion. But her name
is Hermana Michel and she is from La Paz, Bolivia. Her mission is for
Venezuela, but she doesn’t have a visa yet. I will be finishing her
training (she’s been here a month). She’s 27 years old, and...she
SINGS!!!! Ah we have so much fun singing! She’s the only hermana i know
that not only can keep singing soprano when im singing alto, but she
can read music too! It’s great.

Friday- so this is the only real Easter thing that happened was on
this day. We live close to a cemetary, and the world smelled like
flowers this day which was super nice! But then at night we were
walking passed, and there were these big crowds of people walking
around, one person chant-singing on a microphone, and other people
holding up a glass box with the "body of Christ". Um yeah freaky! So
that’s how we celebrate Easter here in bolivia.

Saturday- so i never thought in training id talk much less than i ever
have in lessons. My companion thinks she’s my mom and feels bad that i
don’t understand or talk very well, so she just talks...and talks...
and talks.... but I’ll keep working with her. I mean obviously.
Training is not like i thought it would be though, but i think it’s
mostly the age thing. But we have fun together.

Sunday- so i gave a talk in church today in my new ward about the
atonement. A lot of mormons here think we dont celebrate Easter,
because it’s so big in the catholic church. But we do. In case anyone
was worried or doubtful about that. But we like eggs better than
carrying around... things. Oh also, we were waiting outside a house
for an investigator, and this woman walks by. She asked "where is the
jehovas witness’ church? and we were like we dont know but we are
missionaries from the church of Jesus Christ of- and then she cut us
off and was like "that’s the church i want to go to!" so we were like
yeah well let’s go! Apparently she woke up this morning with a huge
desire or impression to FIND GOD NOW. So she got ready and left her
house early in the morning. Well she walked long and far and dint see
a single person or church. Well long story short, she followed the
spirit, and ended up right in front of us! She came to church, and she
already feels it’s right, and that a huge burden has been lifted. Even
though she walked around all morning, she lives in our area, and close
to the church. Just one of the many miracles that happen on the
mission! So that was exciting. Oh also, we are having an activity on
the 13th of this month, and it’s really hard to get members to go to
missionary activities because everyone always thinks it’s just for new
members for some reason. But, using my creativity (better known as
using the brain of my wonderful mother), i said lets sing the
announcement in all the classes! (oh by the way I’m in a house for four
again so there is four missionaries in this ward. the other two are
Hermana Choque, my trainer, and Hermana Huenchur, the only other
hermana who came with me into Bolivia). So, that’s what we did. I think
we blew everyone’s minds. i think people are going to come to our
activity. Thanks mom! so yeah. good day.

Well thats all for now. Oh have i mentioned that Elder Bednar and
Christopherson will be visiting us this month? (this is not an April
fools joke). yeah! its exciting. Anyways i gotta go, sorry no
much love always and forever from me, hermana black
So actually that was an april fools joke... Elder Christopherson isn’t
coming, its elder Craig C. Christiansen i think of the 70 oops! :)