Monday, January 26, 2015

January 2015- Galapagos!

Feliz Año Nuevo!           Jan. 5, 2015

Dearest Familia Mia,
This week and year have gone by so incredibly fast! I cannot believe that it  is already 2015. Just so you all know, I'm loving working in this sector of Galapagos! It is everything i dreamed it would be and more. There is so much work to do and so little time to do it! This week was pretty slow because everyone was preparing for the New Year and then recovering from the New Year. We did find some pretty great people though. so, hopefully we will be able to work with them this coming week and that we can be the best most obedient missionaries in the world so that everything will turn out good and we will see some awesome miracles here in paradise :)
Last night i had a great experience with my companion. We were just feeling bad because this week we realized that we hadn't been doing everything possible to help the lord in his work. We just sat there studying about what our purpose was and how we can change and be better so that we can really be worthy to be here in the mission and especially be here on the islands. We just have a desire to do everything possible to help out this ward and find all the people we are supposed to find. But to do that we have to be working with the spirit and if we are even the slightest bit distracted we could miss the prompting to talk to someone or knock on a door or go visit a specific member. So last night we repented of everything that we had been doing (don't worry it wasn't anything bad... its just the difference between good and greater), Refocused and now we are ready to go for this coming week!
I'm very excited for the things that are going to happen this week. We have a baptism and another possible baptism. Also, a girl that has been waiting to get baptised for 8 months finally made the decision to do it! I'm super excited for them all!
For New Years, my companion and i decided to participate in the Ecuadorian tradicion of eating 12 grapes for the new year and make a wish for each month... however we aren't allowed to eat the skin so in our 3 hours of nothing time, that's what i was doing :) It was actually really fun... but i can say that next year i'll just be eating the grapes with the skin on them!
I love you all! Hope you have a great week!
Hermana Whitmore

What a week!                  Jan. 12, 2015

Hola Familia! 
Como estan las cosas por alla? Life on the island is pretty fantastic. I got to see my first beach baptism this week, although it was rather sad for me and my companion. What happened was that we were on track for the baptism of Estefania, but Friday night she calls us and keeps saying " i cant get baptized I've already been baptized!" She had called her familia to ask some info for her ficha. They informed her that she had already been baptized in the catholic church and she was freaking out! We went over to her house at 530 in the morning because the baptisms on the beach start at 6. We even got her to the beach and no one was there. She was more worried about getting to work on time then getting baptized so she left... We went to talk to her later and she had completely changed. She doesn't want to talk to us, she avoids eye contact and its super sad. We have had so many amazing experiences teaching her but from one really strategically placed blow from the devil everything went kerplunck! I really hope and pray that someday she can remember everything she learned with us and someday she can try the whole baptism thing again! 
We had a really great experience this week with a lady named Lorena, she was a reference from a member and when we found her she was in a bad place. She was just ready to give up on everything and she told us that she just felt like she was in a hole that she couldn't get out of. She had made some mistakes for a very long time and felt like she was letting her kids down. So the first day we met her, we taught her about the atonement and everyday she has been getting better and had more hope, she thanks us everyday that we go there and we can really see the difference that the gospel is making in her life in such a short amount of time. THE GOSPEL IS AMAZING!!!! The atonement is sooo real and the more we study about Jesus Christ and everything about the atonement, the more we realize how much god loves us and how misericordioso he is. Also, you can really realize how true the church is just from studying about Christ.. God has a perfect plan for us and you can only find the details in the Book of Mormon. The atonement has no purpose if you don't understand the rest of the plan of salvation. I invite you all to think about the atonement this week and what it means in your lives. Also, think about how amazing the plan of salvation is and how much hope and happiness we receive from understanding this plan completely with the help of the Book of Mormon
 just know that i love you all and i hope you all are doing well and that your testimonies are growing everyday!!! 
Hermana Whitmore

Cambios!                    Jan. 19, 2015

Hola Familia! 

This week has been so great and full of great things and great experiences! 
First off, we are working with a lady named Lorena and her kids.  We've been visiting her everyday and she has made the biggest changes I've ever seen! She started out with drinking everyday and never being at home, chain smoking and depression. NOW she has no desire to drink, she is cooking meals for her kids and only smokes one cigarette a day, AND she isn't taking her pills for depression. She is happier then ever. Yesterday she went to church and was just as happy as could be. Her daughter Kerly told me yesterday during sacrament meeting that she wanted to be a missionary like me! How cute is that?! Also, every time we go to visit her with someone new, she likes to tell the story about how she asked the question about 2 weeks ago, "Why doesn't God just come knock on my door to help me out?" and that's when we knocked on the door and told her there was hope! She says that when we left that night, we took a huge weight out the door with us and that every day she is getting better and better! She is so great and I'm soo thankful that I've been here to see the miracles that have happened in her life because of the gospel and the love of God. 

OH, also there were cambios, and my companion left, BUT Hermana Flinders came, my hijastra of the mission! She is the first comp, and i think the only one, that I've ever repeated or will repeat, and i love it!! Today we went and visited the tortuouses and i'll tell you to feel free to buy me a baby one as a pet for when i get home :) haha 

Well, i think that's all the exciting stuff, we are actually finding people to teach and people that want to learn! I'm loving this sector and the fact that i get to be a part of the Lord's work in this part of his vineyard! 

I love you all!

Hermana Whitmore

I survived another week in paradise!    Jan. 26, 2015

Hola Querida Familia, 
I survived another week in the greatest place on earth, the islands! We haven't had much movement of our program this week, but our investigators are doing really well. We are working with one girl named Kerly and she now has 2 attendances at church so she only needs one more to get baptised. She is soo cute and is reading the Book of Mormon on her own. Yesterday, we asked her how her reading was going and she had made a summery of chapter 2 of nefi. She is super excited about everything with the church. with reading and the young womens. Everything! It's sooo awesome! I love to see the excitement and the light in peoples eyes when they learn about the Gospel.
Nothing new is going on, I'm still with the Hermanita Flinders and we are working hard! I got a serious sunburn last Monday so I've been fighting with that all week! But it is totally worth it because i just remember how blessed i am to be in this place at this time!
 Just know that I'm well and i pray for you all, always :)
Hermana Whitmore
Picture one.... i got really sunburned! haha 
Picture 2- Lago de las nimfas