Monday, September 29, 2014

September 2013

OK NOW I have 1 year in the mission!September 1, 2014 4:38 PM 

Hola Querida Familia Mia,
Alright, this is my very antitrunky one-year mark letter :
Welp folks, I have one year in the mission and i feel sooooo weird! I cannot believe that a year ago i was in the MTC having a full big party, playin´ soccer and takin` naps on P-day. I'm definitely a different person now. Spiritually, emotionally and unfortunately physically :) jiji. But I'm so thankful for all of the changes that have happened to me over these extremely short 12 months. I've learned and grown, had some hard times and some fun times. I've visited every part of the mission and had many a compaƱion from Peru. But the thing that I've learned better then everything else is that God has a plan for each and everyone of his children. I've seen it in my life and the lives of the people here in Ecuador. Every experience that I've had personally has been for my growth and learning and i know that it comes directly from God. 

Also, here in dear ol Ecuador, I've learned to appreciate many things about the gospel that i didn't completely understand before. Things like a baptism. A baptism is not JUST a cleansing of our sins, but it's a promise to God that we are going to be better people , that we want to follow Christ and that we appreciate his sacrifice for us. It's the first step we take to be able to enter into God's kingdom. 

OR the sacrament. Its not just the remembrance of the flesh and blood of Christ that we take every week, it is an OPPORTUNITY that we have every week to start over again. We promise God that we will keep his commandments and be disciples of his Son. We literally take upon us the name of Christ and PROMISE to always remember him. 

AND the Book of Mormon. Its not just a blue book that only our church has. Its ANOTHER TESTAMENT OF JESUS CHRIST. This book really holds the fullness of the gospel. Its the KEY to our religion. Its the Guidebook on life directly from God. With the exact steps we need to take to return to his presence. 

I just want you all to know that I LOVE this gospel. I know with every fiber of my being that these things are true. And its not because I've had a great vision or anything, but because God has literally shown me line upon line, precept upon precept that these things are true.

I also know that it is very hard to put your faith in Christ, but when we do and we follow his commandments, we are blessed beyond our wildest dreams. I've also learned that God is our loving heavenly father, that he gives us the commandments for our own well being. I'm so grateful for the opportunity that I've had to be a missionary for the Lord and I'm even more grateful that i still have 6 months left! 

I love the mission! I love that i can get up everyday and study the scriptures and then leave the house and share this message with every one that will listen. I love Ecuador ( especially the south part ). I love the people. I love the food (well... most of it). I love the book of Mormon and I love this gospel! 

I also love you all!!! Have a fantastic week :)

Hermana Whitmore

Picture 1: I bought an ecuador soccerball! Shh! don't tell :) and don't worry, its deflated and will be in my suitcase for 6 months.

Picture 2. Definitely ate a brownie!

I survived cambios!       September 8, 2014 4:04 PM

Hola dearest familia mia!
This week was pretty ... normal. We are still in Azogues and I'm still with H. Roncal. We celebrated her birhday this week and that was quite the adventure! WE KILLED A GUINEA PIG AND ATE IT! yeah... that was a 2 day long process. BUT it actually tasted quite good... I'll have to show you the videos when i get home because there are no words to describe it!
so this week we've been working with this couple and the husband never wants to give us a straight answer about going to church until the last minute! but this week he said he would  come! WOO! so he came to church and loved it and now we've got to get him to accept a baptism date. but he will very soon! i can feel it!
This week 32 nuevitos came to the mission and my comp and i were sure that we were going to train... but they did all the cambios last night and we survived the reaping! we are safe for another week... possibly! haha the cambios here are nuts! I could get cambios Friday night for all i know!
today we went adventuring and found the cara del inca! and he has something to say  to kim: VS picture 1
Well family, that's all i got for ya! i love you all!
Hermana Whitmore

I've returned!

Hello family,        September 15, 2014 3:12 PM

Well! my big news is I'm back! sitting in the same seat i was 5 months ago. Bienvenidos a SANTA ROSA! same sector and everything. The only difference is my companion is Colombian and not Peruvian. My comp has 18 plus months in the mission.. yep she's fried! ha ha she doesn't go home for 2 more weeks, but i hope its a good two weeks and that i learn a lot. I'm also here with Hermana Viloria! my mom.. step mom... mom! ha ha! she's returned to where she was born{started her mission} and she is super stoked! ha ha

Well, this week in Azogues was super cool! we finally have investigators that are progressing and i was finally getting the handle of all the .. lovely people in Azogues! I was getting accustomed to smashing 10 cucharachas every day and i was also getting better at sleeping through the light of our neighbors at 5 o'clock in the morning. ALSO i was loving the cold weather and the warm showers! Now I'm back to hot weather and ice cold showers... well that's the mission for ya! 

I don't have anything really exciting to tell this week just that i love you all and I'm sooo thankful that i grew up with the gospel in my life. That i have the book of Mormon to read and ponder and pray about! i love the mission and i hope that all is well with you guys and that you are all reading your scriptures and saying your prayers AND practicing your Spanish so that you can understand me when i get home!

Loves and handshakes!

Hermana Whitmore

Another week in paradise....     September 22, 2014

Dearest familia, 

Well this week in the house we've been fighting the trunkyness like there is no tomorrow! goodness. We've got two hermanas that have got 19 months in the mission, finally going home this week! So this past week they've been saying goodbye and thinking all about what they are going to do in their houses and all that jazz.... Hermana Apaza and I are just along for the ride and i really hope I'm never this trunky! EVER! Anywho... Its been cool to work in Santa Rosa again and see all the members and my converts (that are still active) ha ha and work with some old investigators. One, who's name is Manuel, is the dad of one of my ex comps converts. He was a little uncertain at first when we came to visit him but something changed and he came to church and he found some people that he knows and now hes super excited for his baptism! WOO!!!! There is a time and a plan for EVERYTHING! Gods watching out for his children, and I've been so blessed in the mission to go to sectors and really see how people are prepared with time and you gotta catch them at the right moment to share the gospel with them. That's why its so important to work with the spirit, so that as a missionary you can know when that time is! 

sorry again, i don't have very many cool things to say, but this week I've learned a lot about trust in the lord and endure to the end! if we don't we are lost!!!! and our lives might seem happy, but they really aren't, especially if we look at things from an eternal perspective! So that's my advice this week! Stick it out to the end :) even if its hard, god will make it worth it in the life to come! 

Love you all! 

Hermana Whitmore

Wonderful world, beautiful people!      September 29, 2014 3:26 PM

Dearest familia mia,

First of all, i just want to say how thankful i am for all of you and for the family that i grew up in and that you guys (my parents) taught me to stay strong and keep the faith! This week I've seen so many things and realized how grateful i am for my life! Ive been here in my old sector working with my conversos and the conversos of other missionaries and it hard! Some are only members or some are a whole family menos activos, and the only thing we can do is try to strengthen their faith and help them come back to church and really put their trust in the lord. 

Today we had consejo para los lideres and it was awesome! Presidente really is called of God and receives so much revelation for the mission. The part that's missing in the chain of success is the humility and the obedience of the missionaries. If we would just listen to los consejos of presidente, we would have sooooo much success! Presidente talked to us about the Laman syndrome and i loved it! Its this attitude that missionaries get when they don't want to obey or think they are better then everything else and WE CANT FALL INTO THAT TRAP! We have to be like Nephi! willing to follow the path that God wants us to follow and obey His commandments and do his will! I want to be more like nefi and have the faith that he has! (I've decided that he is my favorite author in the book of Mormon... his way of speaking is hilarious and VERY applicable!) 

Well family, I love you all! and i hope you have a fantastic week! I think mom asked if we get to watch conference, and that's a yes if we have investigators, so pray for me to have investigators in every session! :) I should have more time next week to write and send pictures :) espero noticias suyas! 

Hermana Whitmore