Monday, March 3, 2014


Hello family! I was hoping that this week I would have lots of wonderful spiritual experiences to share with you that would help you guys catch the spirit of missionary work and all that.... but alas.... we haven´t investigatores. I set apart a little square in my agenda cada dĂ­a to help me have at least one thing to say for each day so here goes my random little letter.

I started my one-thing-a-day on Tuesday, so Monday will remain a mystery (mostly because I don´t remember last Monday).

Tuesday we have our district meetings. But first a little back up. About two weeks ago I wrote a very long and honest letter to the mission president about all the things that were stressing me out and that I didn´t like about the new area and how some things were done here. I was very honest and frank with the president, and I´m afraid I might have been pretty blunt because I´m not sure how to sugar coat things in Spanish still. Anyway, I told the mission president that I felt pressured to baptize children that didn´t understand what they were doing and didn´t have the support of their families (they all have permission, but permission and support are very different things) and that I felt pressured to go for the easy children baptism all for the sake of meeting a goal. I was very frank. I told him everything. Two days later, our zone leaders call to tell us that we will be having interviews the next morning with the president. I was scared to death! I was worried that he didn´t like what I said, that he would chastise me or something, I don´t know! So I prayed very hard all night that I would be able to talk to him openly and understand and all the jazz.
The next morning, our leaders called us again to tell us that we wouldn´t be having interviews. Tuesday, they told us that instead, Presidente Amaya had a training meeting for all of the leaders in the four zones in this area to address some concerns he had. Imagine my surprise when one section of the meeting he expressed concerns in the same order and phrased very similarly to the concerns I expressed in my email before. I´m not kidding. I think he may have just printed off my email and read portions of it. When our zone leaders were telling us what Presidente Amaya told them so we could write down his counsels and what not, Hermana Guitarra my companion was just like, "This is everything you said to me when you got here" and I told her "that´s because I said all of that to Presidente too." So my concerns are being addressed, and I guess the Presidente actually does read all the hundreds of emails he receives every week. So that´s what I got for Tuesday. 

Wednesday, he bishop accompanied us. Let me tell you, the bishop and his family might be my favorite people ever. They think I´m hilarious and have already offered their home for when I return to Ecuador (it´s been established that we as a group have lots of faith that I will return and with faith we can do all things, therefore I will come back and I will probably marry a pilot, according to their predictions and suggestions). Anyway, when he accompanies us, he can teach things in a way that is very direct but spiritual at the same time, so hopefully he will accompany us more often.
Thursday was the food day. An hermana in the ward used to feed the elders every week, but they she got sick so "had the missionaries taken away from her" but now she is able. SO she invited us to eat at her house. She´s used to feeding elders. When we got there, I was given a plate of lasagna, and I kid you not, my portion of lasagna was about four inches high and a square about 8 inches long on each side. It was huge, and it was accompanied with three slices of toasted bread and a separate heap of rice. I thought I was going to die, but I ate all of it except the rice. I´m not too fond of rice, especially with bread and pasta. I was feeling proud of myself and very full, when she brought out ice cream and cookies (there´s always room for ice cream though). Right after this gargantuan meal, we went to go visit a woman who had been investigating the church last year with Hermana Lina (a colombian of 24 years who I adore). Her birthday had recently passed, and she still had cake left over, so we were given cake, and candy, and these strange little sweets things that had been in an open container in her fridge so they had the lingering flavor of onions. I thought I was going to puke, but we can´t turn things down! So I choked it all down and then she gave us soda to wash it all down. Sugar overload. I really did think I was going to barf. So much food in the space of so little time! But I conquered. I think once I´m off the mission, I will never touch soda again. We get served loooooots of soda. They usually make fresh juices and stuff (which I LOVE) for their families but soda I think is more "special", so while I prefer the juice, I receive the soda.

Friday.... I got nothin. We don´t have investigators, so we taught less active members, which is stressful, because lots of them have resentments towards members and we have to try to stop them from talking bad about other people and ooh it´s stressfulñ!

Saturday the bishop accompanied us again, and it was like I was in my 12 semanas training again. We contacted once, and then he told us what was good, what we needed to do better, and that we were going to do another practice. It really was exactly what I did once a week with the zone leaders in my 12 semanas verificacion, except it was more fun.  That night we also had a noche de hogar with some of the members from the ward counsel in the home of a less active member and I´m not sure what, but something I did was very funny.

Yesterday was interesting. There are four hermanas serving as missionaries, and the other three all got up and bore their testimonies, which left everyone looking at me expectantly. Lina, aforemencioned adored colombian, was sitting behind me tugging my braid, Hermana Fajardo (missionary who I also adore) was whispering to me, the bishop and his counselor were just sitting their looking at me, and almost the entire Hualpe family sitting in front of us turned and just stared at me.
So I went. And all anyone said afterwards was that I was biiiiieeeen rojita. Very red. I was shaking like crazy and I have the terrible habit of forgetting spanish when I am in front of lots of people, so it was rather rough.

ANyway, this is my week! I love you all, thanks for the prayers, help out the missionaries in your wards please! They need it!
Hermana Rust

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