Monday, January 27, 2014
This week flew by again! It´s crazy how fast time flies. Time isn´t the only crazy thing here. The weather this week has been out of control! I thought Vegas weather was bipolar, but compared to Uruguay, it´s nothing. It goes from hot to raining cold weather by the hour. I have no idea what to wear to suit the weather for the day. I love the storms here though!
One night it was hot so I had the fan going and window wide open.During the night I decided to randomly wake up and shut the window. I know that was total inspiration and warning from the holy ghost, because a few minutes the power went off and it started to storm. It was the craziest storm I´ve seen yet! It´s so flat here that, that night the wind seriously made me fear a little.
I decided to move away from the window and go sit on Hermana Lopez´ bed with her. Neither of us could sleep so we just sat there looking out the window from across the room and all we could talk about was our investigators. We both couldn´t stop thinking about them before we went to bed that night so we both had ideas........ and then we had a 45 minute conversation about pancakes as we feared for our lives haha
One day we had a lesson with a less active and it was completely cloudy. While we were talking to the member her 85 year old mom randomly pulled out sunglasses and put them on. Now, these weren´t just ANY sunglasses. The only way I can describe them is ¨groovy¨they were just..... groovy. I was laughing so hard. I just turned my body away, because I couldn´t look at her just sitting there silently, plank expression on her face, wearing sunglasses on a cloudy day. Ohhhhh Hermana! I love her and all her madness.
The works good. Unfortunately our baptisms this past week fell through. Don´t worry my heart is only a little torn..... We are working very hard with these people to over come their smoking. Pray for Juan and Lorena :) They need it! I love and miss you all!
Love, Hermana Baca
***If you know Kaylee then you know she HATES the wind. The mission president posted photo's of the damage from the storm.....
Sunday, January 26, 2014
From Sister Kaylee Baca....
I no longer have Hermana Lopez as a companion. I have Hermana Alba. One day at lunch a little girl kept calling Hermana Lopez, Hermana Alba and when Hermana Lopez would correct her she would say ¨NO! It´s Hermana ALBA.¨ Even when she said the prayer she said ¨Thank you for Hermana Baca and...... Hermana Alba.¨So All week I´ve been calling my companion Hermana Alba and she is so use to it now that she actually replies.
The Spanish is picking up REAL quick. I´m really starting to love the language and being able to communicate. Not only do I understand almost everything, but according to 2 little 10 year old girls I know English, Spanish, German, Tongan, Chinese, Japanese, ¨African¨, and much more. The little girls started asking me how to say words in English and it went from ¨How do you say....in English?¨ To ¨How do you say.... in Chino (Chinese)¨So I made up chines words and spoke like I knew Chinese. After that things just escalated from there. The asked me about Africa and I made clicking noises and then Tonga and I used words like ¨mahalo¨and ¨aloha¨. So just so everyone knows, if you need to know how to say something in another language I can be your google translate. ( At least they think so ;) )
My Spanish is definitely not perfect and I still mess up every now and then. In fact, the other day I asked the little boy who lives in front of us if he was hot.... as in hot from the weather. I said ¨Tiene calor¨Which translated into ¨Are you warm?¨ and after that he said yes and ran inside before I could finish talking to him. I thought it was weird that he ran inside but didn´t think much of it. A few minutes later when we were in our house he came to the door with a colored pencil..... ¿ QUE EN EL MUNDO? ...... He thought I said ¨tiene color¨ not ¨tiene cAlor¨ and that I had asked for a colored pencil. It was really funny.
We are working hard. We have 2 baptisms on Friday! Wooh! I am so happy for both of these investigators. SO happy. It´s a little bitter sweet though because that means we lose them as investigators and now they´ll be members come Friday, but I would definitely much rather call them members.
I got to see my ¨cousin¨, Hermana Sorenson from the MTC. She´s pretty sick so just pray for her. I don´t want her to leave Uruguay. As for the work. We´re definitely working. This week flew by. Miss you all!
Love, Hermana Baca
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
Good News: THE LICE IS GONE!
Bad News: Hermana Lopez and I can´t get through a song without laughing, never fall asleep quick due to talking, and are enjoying our companionship too much. She´s great and she is such a mom. Today, when we went to buy groceries she had me get yogurt because she thinks I´m not getting enough Calcium....Thanks mom!
I´m really getting sad that the times going by fast. I love this area, my comp., and my zone so much! The only bad thing is that the elders ate ALL our ice cream. Little punks. haha ( I just found that out and I´m still a little salty about it.) It´s ok though because I give them a hard time about EVERYTHING. Neither of the elders speak English and they always try to learn from me and talk to me in English. Elder Larrea is the district leader and is trying to learn the new gringos name. It´s Farnsworth and really hard for him to say. So I have him practice saying it every time we talk and I told him to pronounce its FARKSworth. It´s hilarious and I can´t wait to go to our district meeting tomorrow and hear him call him it. That´s what he gets for eating all the ice cream! haha
I spoke in church yesterday. And yes the talk was in SPANISH. I didn´t know I was speaking until the day before when our mission leader asked how my talk was coming along. I guess he had told me earlier in the week but I didn´t catch that part in his Spanish! He´s one of the harder people to understand and he just assumes I know everything he´s saying. I had Hermana Lopez sit behind me just in case I needed help with translation. The only time I turned around for help is when I wanted to quote the speaker before me and I didn´t remember his name. It ended up being one of the best talks ever though! It wasn´t my message or about how well I spoke it was the message Heavenly Father wanted them to hear. I knew from the start when I started stressing out about it that the only way it was going to go well is if the spirit was speaking, not me. The whole day I prepared all I kept asking was to have Heavenly Fathers help in delivering what they needed to hear. Plus, I learned so many things from the talk as I was GIVING it and I prepared it! I know it was Heavenly Fathers message not mine and somehow through my broken Spanish he gave the message that was needed.
We had our baptism on Friday for R who is a member of a semi active family. IT WAS THE MOST STRESSFUL NIGHT OF MY LIFE! When we found out that we had interviews with our zone in a different area the day before the baptism Hermana Lopez started stressing out and I didn´t understand why. All she kept saying was ¨You have no idea Hermana Baca. Baptism days are so stressful.¨ Then when we were at the zone meeting and all the elders found out that we had a baptism that day, they kept saying ¨Oh you need to get back to your area. Baptism days are crazy.¨ The assistance even ended up driving us back as soon as we were able to go. And when we got home that´s when it all started.
We had left the baptism dress at the conference and we were suppose to meet sisters at a bus stop so they could do a quick hand off to us. The only thing is a sister had prepared lunch for us over a mile away and since we didn´t eat with her due to the meeting she told us to come pick it up to go. When we finally made it to her house she had the whole table set up for us to eat, not just pick it up and go. And she persistently INSISTED we eat. So we ate fast knowing that we had to be at the bus stop and ran to the bus stop after. When we saw the buses pulling up we and we were FEET from the bus stop my backpack came open and EVERYTHING fell out. ( I´m sure it was a show for everyone watching on the streets.) The bus kept going as we picked everything up and we JUST missed it. Then Hermana Lopez and I were sitting at the bus stop catching our breath and something magnificent happened! The sister came running towards us waving the dress in her hand from the bus pulled over on the side of the road a ways down the road. RELIEF mixed with a lot of laughter from us. haha
We shouldn´t have laughed though because it was over then! We went to go pick up R to find out that her mom had decided to go out of town for the day and NO ONE knew when she would be back. GREAAAATTTTTT. On top of that R, who loved us and would always love being with us, did NOT want to go to the church. AND her brother who was suppose to baptize her ended up having to work. All I could think was PORQUE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We ended up getting a hold of her mom who said she was on her way, R then decided she would come to the church if her mom took her, and we got a hold of her cousin to baptize her. After all this the only step left was to have the baptism. Easy right? No.
We got to the church and the baptism was suppose to start at 7 BUT R still wasn´t there and in order for a baptism to take place you should have a member of the bishopric and primary. The bishop forgot and didn´t send anyone else to take his place and the primary president did the same. So our mission leader ended up getting a hold of one of the counselors and teachers for us and they both showed up right before the baptism. In the middle of all this chaos.... our phone died, the elders for got the baptism clothes for E, the family took forever to come, and so many more little things.
The good news is R was baptized at 8:40 at night and all the stress was worth it. I NOW understand why everyone was saying baptism days are crazy. The adversary worked so hard to prevent her baptism. This is seen by all the missionaries not just this time. It taught me just how IMPORTANT baptisms are. If the adversary is working REALLY hard you know it´s REALLY important. ¡ HOY ES EL DIA! We have to hasten the Lords work no matter how hard the adversary is hastening his work too.
Love, Hermana Baca
Monday, January 6, 2014
Happy New Year.... I have lice. That´s how my New Year started. On new years eve we were visiting the Furtados and Hermana Furtado noticed I was itching my head a lot so she sent us home with a comb to check for lice. We I combed my hair in the morning, sure enough! .... I had lice. :( Luckily, for everyone reading this you all are probably on a different continent and it won´t effect you. As for my companion.....She has it too. After our discovery we spent 2 hours at the Furtados as most of the family helped pick out all the ¨piojos¨ (lice) and eggs from our hair. Following that we spent the day santizing our house and cleaning our bedding. Hermana Furtado also forbade us from giving the kids kisses and demanded that we come to her house everyday this week for her to continue cleaning our hair.
This was disgusting and got in the way of our work, but It´s all apart of the mission experience right? It ended up being a blessing too though! The Furtado´s are a less active family and their son left for his mission the day after. He is the first missionary in his family. Due to the lice we were able to spend the day visiting with him before he left as they clean our hair. It was great to hear his testimony and visit with him ( BTW he loves teasing and LOVED the fact that we had lice). We also extended a New Year goal for the Furtados to read the Book of Mormon everyday as a family. Everyday we go to get our hair clean we read the Book of Mormon with their family. Hopefully, by the time we no longer need her to check our hair everyday they will start reading on their own.
Another thing that happened this week is we got a dog and a pool! The neighbors decided the dog was too annoying to keep near their house so they chained it in front of my window. :) It´s......great. As for the pool. I guess in front of our house was the perfect place for them to put their kiddie pool. It´s not even like we have a big front yard for all these things but somehow it all fits. It´s so tempting to jump in the pool on hot days. Oh, Uruguayans! Gotta love them!
The days are still pretty hot but we have a freezer full of ice cream thanks to one of the families in our ward. They sell ice cream from their house and they ALWAYS make sure we go home with tons of it. And if that isn´t enough they always drop by and give us some. The only problem is we don´t have a freezer! haha We go over to the elders house every other day to store ice cream in their freezer. We literally have a whole freezer full of ice cream.
Times flying here in Uruguay! Every night I always think to myself ¨ I can´t believe it´s already time for bed.¨ I have so many experiences I wish I could write, but as I said time FLIES and I only have so much time on the computer. Here is one of my favorite experiences I had this week though.
Hermano Martinez is a less active member in our ward. The week before Christmas we visited his family and found out that him and his wife were getting a divorce. We thought about the family a lot after that, but with the holidays it made it hard to visit him. Although, he never slipped our minds. Hermana Lopez and I always thought about him and how he must be going through a hard time this Christmas.
On Saturday night we were planning for the next day. We decided that Sunday would be a great day to try to visit him and we would need to invite the Bishop to come with us. I was scepticle our plan wouldn´t work because the bishop is ALWAYS busy. Although when we asked him after church to meet us at his house for our last lesson of the day he told us he would be able to make it. If there was anyone we needed, it was him. He holds the keys to help this ward. Especially, Hermano Martinez.
Our plans were set for the lesson that night and we went out to work right after church. Unfortunatley, the day wasn´t very successful. It was hot, we were fasting and hungry, and all of our lessons fell through EVEN the backup plans. Dissappointed and tired we decided to head to our 5:00 dinner appointment and hour early. Good thing we did because they wouldn´t have been anywhere ready at 5 if we didn´t show up. As they got dinner ready we talked about what we were going to teach to Hermano Martinez and practiced. We had dinner and we were able to leave the house early enough to get to our lesson on time as planned.
We arrived at 6:01 leaving no time to talk to the Bishop about our lesson plan. All we had told him was we were going to talk about the Atonement. We also knew what we were going to say, because just that morning I had studied in 3 Nephi 9 and the last few verses of this chapter were exactly what I felt Hermano Martinez needed to hear. I was grateful we had planned while we waited for dinner instead of wasting time visiting with the family. Even though we were unable to talk to the bishop, I felt confident in our lesson plans.
The lesson started with a hymn and Hermano Martinez instantly offered to give the opening prayer. We all bowed our heads and.....SILENCE. A good solid 10 seconds of silence as the spirit fell upon us. All of us could feel it. After the prayer Hermano Martinez said he knew the Bishop and sister missionaries came to his house as a message from Heavenly Father.
Hermana Lopez taught her portion and then it was my turn. I talked about the atonment and how it´s apart of our plan. We read 3 Nephi 9 21-22 and I shared my thought on what I had learned that morning from these verses. Then, it was the bishops turn. Every word he said was PERFECT. With all of us teaching in sync the spirit felt so strong. It was hard to fight tears. I was doing great until the bishop said our favorite phrase in the mission ¨Hoy Es El Dia¨. He talked about how today is the day for him to change. I couldn´t understand everything that was being said as I tried to follow their spanish, but what I could understand was the spirit.
Our whole day was guided by the spirit. Every event that day lead up to that moment. The spirit lead us to add Hermano Martinez into our plans, the spirit lead me to study what Hermano Martinez needed that morning, the spirit lead us to go early to dinner, the spirit lead us to spend time preparing the lesson, and the spirit lead us during the lesson. I felt like the day was going so bad. What it taught me though is that as much as I want to think this is my work It´s not. It´s the Lords work and he´ll do it on HIS time and in HIS way. All I have to do is be obidient and do what I´m suppose to be doing no matter what. As I follow his guidence he´ll lead me and I´ll be an instrument in his hands.
HOY ES EL DIA! The Savior will come again and this is Heavenly Fathers work to gather his sheep before the second coming.
Love, Hermana Baca
Meme our sheep we are bringing for the Nativity! Yes, it´s in the house. :) It just walked right in and they didn´t care. That´s the norm!
The little kids we teach!
Familia SANTA MARIA ( At least some of them)
This was the temperature INSIDE our house. It´s about 104 degrees F. Don´t worry about it! I didn´t die!
I UNDERSTAND!!!! That was my Christmas present :) I don´t understand everything of course, but MOST of what people say. It also depends on the person. haha Some people just have weird accents. I love it because now I feel like I can actually contribute and converse with these people during lessons.
I had a great Christmas in Uruguay. They celebrate on the 24th. That day I woke up sick, but I still wanted to go visit all our less active families and investigators for lessons so despite what I felt I still left the house and didn´t say anything haha BAD IDEA. It was really hot that day and we had a lot of walking to do to get from one appointment to another. At the end of the day we met up with the elders to walk to one of our last appointments. As we were walking I felt more and more sick. FINALLY I threw up right there in the middle of a busy street. MERRY CHRISTMAS! It was great. ( No, really, it was. I was waiting for that all day.)
The day ended great because I was able to eat dinner after that and the members really took care of me. Christmas here, is like the 4th of July or New Years. At midnight fireworks go off everywhere. I just sat in my bed and watched them out the window because there was no way I would be able to sleep. It´s a party all night long for them.
We had an AWESOME last week of the year. We have had some great lessons but what made the difference this week was we had A LOT of lessons with the members. I am starting to learn that, that´s really the way to go with missionary work if you REALLY want to see people convert to the gospel. All of our investigators came through members. There are many blessings that come through these lessons
1. The investigator has a relationship with the members so when the missionaries leave, they´ll stay active in church.
2. The members are ALWAYS able to connect with the investigator on a level that missionaries wouldn´t be able to. For example, one of our investigators has 5 kids......I have none.
3. EVERY TIME the members testimony is strengthened and they learn from the lesson too.
Not only do I see blessings from working with the members, but President Monson told us in this last conference that ¨Now is the time for members and missionaries to come together to work together to labor in the Lords vineyard to bring souls unto him.¨ So if a prophet says it. It´s coming from our Heavenly Father. Hermana Lopez and I were talking and she was saying how more than 50% of the conference talks were about missionary work. In past times we have seen the prophets warn about having saving and food storage. Years later the recession took place. In past times the prophets warned about the family unit and The Family Proclamation To the World was made. Now we´re seeing family units becoming less and less united all over the world.Today, the prophet in his apostles aren´t sending out a warning. They´re saying NOW is the time to prepare ourselves and others for the second coming of Christ. TODAY IS THE DAY. ¡ HOY ES EL DIA!
I am see success when I work with the members. We have over 80,000 missionaries working, but we can´t do it alone. WE NEED MEMBERS HELP. Like I said TODAY IS THE DAY to prepare those who you love and care about for the second coming so when the day comes you don´t regret not sharing the knowledge you have about the restored gospel on the earth today. This isn´t my council, this isn´t President Monson´s council, this is the Lords council. Doctrine and Covenants 88:73.
I challenge you all to share this message with you´re friends and family who don´t have it. Pray to know who you can help and I promise as you follow the Lords council he will guide you as you share his message and you will see blessings fall into your life.
Love, Hermana Baca