Monday, March 28, 2011

A good week.

Well, this week has been good. Hermana Nelsen is one trooper. I love her to death and she keeps me laughing all day every day. She is so amazing and I know the Lord has a way of sending us exactly what we need instead of sometimes what we want in life. I'm eternally grateful for her and her support and her charming effort in everything she does. I'm absolutely blown away at how well she is understanding and speaking the spanish. We make a great team. Even though we aren't always grammatically correct we make our point and the other people definitely can feel it when they need to. It's amazing to get the members to go out with us. They help us so much and it puts a bond between you and the members. It is really fun. Our ward correlator helps us a lot, The relief society president is my favorite to get to take out with us. She is so wonderful. Her name is Hermana Hoyos and she is from Columbia. She has been a member for just about 4 years now. Her husband joined about a year after her and they are just solid rocks in the church. I think about them and how they talk about their missionaries. If their missionaries could now see all the wonderful things that they are doing for others now and the strong leaders that they are in our ward. It's so cool to think that the Lord blesses us missionaries to be instruments for good and help people start a journey with blessings they can't comprehend yet. Somehow when the people find their rock as their redeemer their whole being and focus changes. They become people that they don't really know yet. It's sweet!

Fast and testimony meeting was really awesome. We had a mission fast for an Elder in our mission that just recently went home becuase of health issues. They finally found out that he has a form of lymphomic cancer which was really hard to hear but the good news is that it is one of the most treatable types of cancer so there is hope and odds are good. So keep him and his family in your prayers. I also love testimony meetings here. The ward members have such deep and sincere testimonies. I was talking to Jonathan Armijos (the investigator) about how profound it is to hear the members testimonies and feel their strength. Most of the people here in New York are first generation converts. They really are here for the right reasons they are doing things for themselves and not out of tradition or family or expectation, norm etc. It's really admirable and I really wonder sometimes how my life would be if I hadn't always been a member and was a convert. How would I be different? What would my conversion story be about? Its always good for people to come to church but I was really impressed with the effort that jonathan made to come. He has so much on his plate. It's getting to be that time where the Satan starts making the world come a tumbling down to try and cast doubt into your mind. So not only did Jonathan work all week long but he worked until 3am Sunday then came to church at 9am and had someone else cover for him until 11 where he had to go back into work all the way to Manhatten hasta a las 5pm. No that is dedication right there. Where there is a will there is a way even if you kinda half way die trying. He also asked for a blessing from the elders before he left. He received some really powerful statements and I hope he just ate them up for all they were worth. I know it was an answer at least to my prayers and I know that it was in reality a blessing and guidance from his loving Heavenly Father. Those elders didn't know half significance and depth of half the stuff they were saying. But it didn't matter becuase Jonathan and God did. That's something that is just really cool about the work. When you are blessed with the opportunitiy to work through the spirit. yYou both can feel it yet sometimes you don't know the extent of how the other person is applying it to their life. you just know that it is going to be the right thing becuase that's what god wants you to say. So cool. So Jonathan definitley got some good blessings from doing his duty of going to church. Even if it was hard Yet God promises you blessings if you fulfill your end and you could definitely see Jonathan leaving a different person than he came in. Weird how that works but true.

I'm so excited for General Conference. It is going to be amazing! It is really awesome. There just isn't anything like conference in the mission. It's going to be interesting watching it in Spanish? Actually I really don't know how that works out. I'll have to let you know. So crazy.

I'm doing some serious organization of the area. We have a new mission plan to work through the members. For instance, we are the Rego spanish sisters and our area is huge. We have some areas that are densely compacted with members and then also some areas that have harldy any members to speak. Doesn't it make more sense to plot the members out and concentrate on finding people where there is already a built in support nextwork that can help fellowship and keep them strong? Of course.... so as we go to visit members, as we go reactivate Less actives. We knock and look for people around those that we are working with. We teach with the members. We obtain referrals through the members. Do you know how much the rates and percentages of baptisms go up as you teach with members or better yet teach in members homes? Like sky rockets out the roof. Same with member referrals. Just think if every person in the church gave 2 member referral a year the church would almost double according to the statistics! Member referrals are golden most of the times and half the time they get baptized because they already have a relationship of trust with the member etc etc etc. I feel like the ability of the members to help the work of the mission go forward is so essential when I get home... oh snap.

I have had a lot of leadership training meetings lately. I had one this past week on the importance of planning. Successful missionaries are the ones that know how to plan effectively. Time is the most precious resource God has given us the way we choose to use it is priceless. Planning should be a revelatory experience and done through the spirit. Hard work and diligence reveals capacity.

Still having cool random contacting experiences. Love them. We have an appointment with one of our train contacts tonight at the church. His name is Sebastian from Mexico and we 've taught him already once last week. Good potential. I can feel it. :) I'm not saying I know but I'm interested to see what progresses.

Also found a cute Colombian Girl and her other friend. Shirley and Carolina. Shirley just loves to play. She is 30 yet acts 18 :) and Carolina is a little skeptical but you can tell she is taking in everything we say to one point or another. I'm hoping they create a little bit of a desire in the next little bit and we can really get them going but we will have to see.

I can't believe Tanner and Kelsi are engaged. (to different people) lol. That just blows my socks and I'm so happy for both of them. Mckay, alex, and sheen will be there in the same boat before too long. Crazy.... haha. I wish you all my very best. lol. Just make sure I get announcments. That is my only request. :) I feel like my life is on pause in Utah but I forget everyone elses is pushing forward. Adelante! :) 

Mom y familia! Thank you so much from the package! Mom, just so you know it doesn't bother me when you call me by my first name in my letters. I'm your daughter for goodness sakes. Call me whatever your heart desires. And also I was going to tell you I love your letters. They make me feel very loved and they are very inspiring. I don't think most mothers write their daughters about the stuff we talk about. You help me a lot in progressing with the work and keeping my eye on the goal etc. Thanks so much I think its great and we'll see if it lasts the next year. The other Elders in my district say you won't keep up at the same pace by the holidays. I told them "they don't know my mom" hahah. I'm glad your taking care of tawn. Thanks so much! You just give her a big hug from me. Our apartment is decorated with the cute little easter eggs and such for Easter.The bread is absoltuely divine. I had to beg Hermano Ovalle for it because he told me it was too good and that he wanted it for payment as his delivery. Even though you gave him his own loaf. lol. Thank you for the Jump drive it's exactly what I needed and the letters etc. However, mom/dad whoever bought the gospel principles.... you know that I Got my missionary call to speak spanish right?.... lol. As much as I love Portuguese and it is very similar to Spanish... the portuguese understand a lot more spanish than the spanish understand portuguese. Entonces, no puedo entender mi Principios del Evangelio porque escribio en Portuguese. What do you want me to do with it? Do you want me to send it back or just put it on a shelf? Or give it to the Brazilian Elder that lives next door lol? Sorry, I know that's got to be frustrating. Oh but the DVD is awesome! Exactly what I wanted! It's perfect!

Love you much!

Hermana Lewis

Monday, March 21, 2011

Conquisto el Mundo


What's up? I love you so much! K so God never ceases to surprise me in litttle miraculous ways. Transfers were Tuesday and I received a brand new Sister. Sister Nelson is from Wyoming. She has lived in St. George for the last 5 years and went to Dixie. Her family was very surprised when she told them that she wanted to go on her mission and that she was going to be turning in her papers. It's interesting to see how sister missionaries have been perceived over the last decade but how we are constantly receiving more and more sisters. It's becoming the popular thing to do people! Because it's the bbest!!!! Anyway I'm just glad that she had the strength and courage to do it despite the pressure from friends and family. She comes from a part member family and hasn't always been active her whole life. Once she came back to church though she said it was a whole perspective change for her and her whole life has changed because of it. All I can say is I am so glad she came into my life. She is the biggest support and loves to work. She is absolutely halarious. She makes me laugh so hard. We have experienced so many tender mericies in the last week. God has definitely been guiding us and we have been able to reap the blessing from doing our very best. She didn't speak any spanish before the MTC but she understands pretty much everything during lessons and she is also able to get any point she wants to across to our investigators.

I'm in a pickle right now because all the investigators that we are working with aren't progressing much and it's because they aren't coming to church. So being the trainer I'm trying to decide to I want to just drop them like that and go do finding all the time. Back off a little at how much we visit them which would really make them just fall of the face of the planet. Or keep teaching seeing if my new comp can help me in a way that we weren't able to teach in the past and give her some more practice in lessons etc with people we have a relationship with... decisions decisions. But as I have been pondering I've been amazed at how a bunch of little miracles have passed in our path.

Our first lesson together was with Maritza after transfer meeting. Maritza is the one that has a sister in Maryland that is a member. It was a good lesson. We gave her a book of mormon to read and she opened up a lot to us about how before she joined her other church 3 months ago she didn't trust in God. She didn't have the heart that she does now. She also explained how she had confusion about which church she should be listening to. Her church told her she shouldn't listen to the mormons anymore (duh, of course they said that) but that she like talking with us and feels good about the things that we talk about. She is such a nice lady and she is very patient. We just need to get her to start reading. I asked her to read but when I've called to check up on her she hadn't read. So pray that we will get her to start progressing. She is way cool and I really feel good about her.

The other thing is that we have had so many random people fearlessing us lately. For example, 2 days ago we were walking down the street and this Dominican guy greeted us sisters and was like que lo que!? Started talking to him and discovered that he was a member and he hasn't been to church hardly at all sine he moved her from the DR. He was baptized almost 11 years ago and should be in our ward. So then we asked him if minded if we passed by sometime this upcoming week. He told us of course anytime. So we had a return appointment with him last night. Went to his house last night. Way fun, crazy, loud, dominican family. Pretty typical. But they totally greeted us and just welcomed us into the home. Taught a little bit abou tthe restauracion. Mom isn't a member and a lot of his nieces and nephews etc. So there is some good potential there. The mom talked about how she had a grandson on a mission right now and her home was our home whenever we wanted. They were super nice. Loved it and I'm hoping we can get some potential in helping the rest of the family become members and reactiviating the other members too.

Then the other night me and sister Nelsen were practicing our spanish while we were in the midst of getting on the train. I could tell this guy was looking at us just full of curiousity I think it was because we were in such a good mood. That doesn't happen often here in New York so many people look depressed etc. So we started talking to him and gave him a card. I give out so many cards in a day okay, rarely do they call back or want to come to church. The always say they want to but hispanics a lot of the time they are all talk and no action. My comp was so stoked when we got off the train and she was like " I just know he is going to call us" i said I sure hope so. Well guess what happened after planning, Sebastian from the train called us and he wanted to meet with us to learn more about who the heck we were and what he Book of Mormon card was for. So we are supposed to meet with him at the church today.

Then also this morning I was on the bus reading a restoration phamlet in Spanish and I look up and see this guy looking at me. He asked me if he could have one of what I was reading. I said por su puesto! Of course! haha from columbia really awesome. He too, I think might call us and we could see what good could come from that. I'm super grateful for all these cool expeiences the lord is blessing us with.

Pray that we will be able to contact Jonathan. He has been really busy with work lately yet he always calls us back when he is done. but I can not get a hold of him for the life of me. He hasn't come to church now for 2 weeks and I'm not sure what to do. He is so awesome! I know one of the reasons president has left me here so long is because of Jonathan. He's come so far and I really think my heart might shatter if decides to forget everything he has learned up to this point. Change is hard. It's hard to change your life. Really and truely yet it is so worth it! Pray that some miracle will be able to take place the next couple of days and that he is okay and still pressing forward.

I'm almost done with Alma in the BOM. It's been really cool to be reading the BOM as a mission. I'm learning a lot. I read about the stripling warriors and how they obtained their power from god. I like to compare myself to them and know that I"m part of a strong and undefeatable army as long as we put our complete faith in god and strive to follow his promptings of the holy spirit. Mission is a cool thing. Very interesting and definitely a journey. Love you all

Con Amor,

Hermana Lewis

Friday, March 18, 2011

The new converts from Cuba, the sisters and the elders

This is the first baptism and my companion Sister Jasso

Que Honda

Que Honda familia?!

Hey wow, so right when you start to get comfortable with an idea the whole scenery starts to change once again. God has a way of keeping you on your toes. I know that this is the all part of the growing process. Yet sometimes I wonder.... lol. Last thing I was expecting was President to call me up for another interview on Friday. He has asked me to train another greeny for this upcoming transfer and train once again. So Hermana Jasso will be headed to Midwood to serve with Sister Lambert. My greeny isn't going to be a native this time so it is going to be a little bit different with different challenges. It's going to be cool to serve in this area for another transfer. I told president my hesitancies for training again but he told me he was feeling good about it and that it was exactly where he needed me right now. So I said fine. He then made a joke and told me I could take sister banszhevsky's spot if I wanted to. They are blinding her into a new area and having her train a greeny as well. I told him no thanks, I'll pass and I'll stick with what i have got :) It's nice because I've started getting some ties to the members and they are starting to feel more like family and they are starting to take better care of me as well.

Oooo, I've got something to tell speaking of members. The Ovalle family is going to Utah this week for their daughter's wedding. Hermano Ovalle offered to take a package for me for you guys. So I sent home some pictures, treats and scarves for you chillens. I gave him your address and numbers so he should be calling you guys up sometime this week. You might invite him and his family over for dinner or something. They speak english too so you don't have to be worried there. They are from Guatemala. Hermana Ovalle works in Utah in West Valley? So they aren't too far from us. They should be in Utah at the end of this week and then staying for another week. Hermano Ovalle also offered to bring back anything if you want to send anything. I'm trying to think of something that I need from Utah that I can't get here. I thought of a couple of things that I really would like that I can get here but are just going to take time to order. First, I want a Gospel Principles Book/Manuel in Spanish (Principios del Evangelio), I also want to find a copy of "Special Witnesses of Christ" DVD. I like to use it when I teach about living prophets. Then they can watch the DVD about Thomas Monson and actually kind of see what he looks like and what he talks about. Something around those lines.
The other cool thing that happened at church the other day is that Tatiana Morales and her husband moved back to Rego Park this month from Virginia so they are back. She is literally one of the answers to my prayers. They absolutely love Hermana Cowley and so it has automatically opened their arms for me. What a great blessing and she is so wonderful. I asked her how jaci is and what the ward was like in Virginia. She said it was good and that Hermana Cowley is a fabulous missionary. I asked her about her language and Hermana Cowley is doing with the language. She said at the beginning of her mission it was hard but that she speaks pretty much perfect now :) I tell myself there is hope for my future :) Tatiana and I exchanged information and she is going to try and come out with us this week. I am excited! She is awesome and I seriously miss Hermana Cowley so stinkin much! It is weird to think we really aren't that far away and that we are doing the same work right now. Tatiana said Hermana Cowley mentioned that we were going to do a road trip after our missions and hit Virginia, and New York. I'm so down for that Idea

As for the work. There were a few things that happened that were really good. The Lord has blessed us with a lot of people that are investigating and that I really like teaching. The only problem is that they aren't progressing as fast as I would like them too. I'm not sure if it is a thing that just needs a little bit more time or if it is something that means we should drop and look for someone more prepared. It's hard to know.

Javier, Kathi,and Austin- They are so fun to teach. They like us teaching them in English because Austin doesn't speak enough spanish to really understand what we are talking about. They have good desire to learn an dwant more in their life. They have a lot of problems with the word of wisdom though and it's one of the things that is separating their family. They just lost a family member this last week so they were really busy with the funeral and family stuff so we weren't able to meet with them but hopefully we will see them this week. We are also teaching one of their in laws that lives in the same apartment complex. His name is Alfonso and he is a friend of a ward member and so he has been listening in that sense. Ward members are the best to teach with! I love it! I think it is a brilliant system #1. They just bear such powerful testimony #2. It brings a built in support system for when the investigator gets baptized. #3. Even though I have the gift of tongues sometimes I just feel like the natives are able to explain the concept better and clarify.

Jonathan- Mom thanks for your letter! I haven't given it to Jonathan yet but I think that he is really going to like it. I really liked it. A lot! He didn't come to church this last week but he did come to members homes with us this last week including a noche de hogar which is really good. We had a really good time at the Arguello's home with him. We had an appointment with another investigator right after and Jonathan ended up coming with us to that too. We have started teaching Altagracia and Tairis again. They are super awesome. We teach them English first. Jonathan helped sister Jasso and I teach english. That was kind of fun. Not going to lie Altagracia really struggles with the whole concept of English but Jonathan was able to do a lot better job helping her form the vowels than I ever have been. I guess it's because he had to learn it himself a few months back. We also watched the restoration video with them that night. We couldn't get the menu to switch to Spanish so it's a good thingJonathan was there becuase then he translated it for us. Really don't know if that lesson would have gone down without his help. He just needs to get baptized already! To me I relate him to the story of Alma. A person that is truely changed by the love and atoning sacrifice of the savior and once they find the fire and the testimony they go on a mission and convert thousands. I could totally see that for Jonathan. It's a continual up and down process yet I believe deep down that for the record at some point it is going to happen. lol. Pray that he gets a really good job soon that he doesn't ever have to work Sundays. I know that is a big stressor for him right now. He's been out of work for a few months and money is getting tight.

Frank, Altagracia, and Tairis- We were walking around this week and I really wanted to go look up altagracia. We stopped visitiing them back in the holidays because of the workschedule eof Altagracia. Altagracia hasn't been answering our phonecalls or anything. So I felt like one day we should go over there and look her up. Then we went over, knocked, and nothing. I was writing a card to leave with saying we had stopped by when the door slowly creaked open and behind the door stood altagracia. I couldn't believe how happy my heart was to see her. So we went in and taught her and then she invited us back for another week. She was really bummed though that sister stephens wasn't with us anymore.

Mildred and her mom Francisca- Seriously this past week I was able to be a part of one of the best lessons I have ever been a part of. I loved it so much! It was right after sister Jasso found out she was being transferred. She was super sad but it gave her a little kick to give it her all in the lessons that we had left together and she kicked trash man! It was one of those lessons where the investigators had tears in their eyes and the spirit was really there. The ONLY thing that could have made it better is if we could have gotten that commit for baptism that we have been searching for from them. They are super nice to us though and I think the lessons we have for them are phenomenal. I just want them to come to church and to join the church for the things that they know are true!

Isaac Morales- Met him this transfer. He is very open and has a lot of interesting views. Honestly I don't know if he is all there but he has a sincere desire to change and called us becuase he wants to know what the mormons have to offer. We stopped by his house this week and he wasn't there. We left him a card and found out that night that he is in the hospital. Back in dec. I guess he had stomach cancer and so they had to remove his stomach and everything else with it. So now he doesn't have a stomach and his intestines have some extra space to float around. What had happened is that his intestine had formed a knot and was cutting off circulation. So they had to cut him open and remove that part of the intestine and get him all untwisted. He's been really sick. We didn't know any of this, Yet sister Jasso kept saying hey are we by Isaac? We need to go see Isaac. I didn't see a lot of potential in Isaac as far as a baptism goes but knew it would be nice to see him but by no means were we close to his area. Later we were walking by Kathi and Javiers when she said it again and i said no we aren't there. But then we both got thinking and we realized we were walking by the hospital and we decided to go in and see if there was a patient there by the name of Isaac Morales. Sure enought there was. He was in the intensive care surgical unit and they told us that we could go up. cool huh? Ya he was really sick and he was really glad to see us. He asked us if we had another church magazine we could have. Ironically we had a visited a Less active who had randomly given us a Ensign to give to one of our investigators of whoever we wanted. It worked out perfectly. To me it was just a witness that you both recieve revelation for the companionship and it is very important to follow and be united in purpose.

Mom, sister Jasso has one of her friends post all her letters home on her blog. it is this... You can keep up on her newsdates here. I think you should keep writing her inspiring things throughout her mission even though we aren't going to tbe comps anymore.
Mom, Dad, Happy Anniversay! I'm so happy for both of you! And very glad yo uwere married so I could be a part of this great fam! Have fun in Japan in a couple of weeks! I'm so excited! don't forget to take lots of pictures and to mail me something cool! :)So yo ustill going to Japan even though that big disaster happened over there? Oh guess what else dad? I had cherry Blossom herbal tea this last week from a little chinese store. Made me thing of you going to see the cherry blossoms in Japan in a little bit.

Anyway, love you much! Cuidase!

con amor,

Hermana Lewis

Monday, March 7, 2011

Que pex

How you doing? I love you all so much. I appreciate all the letters, love, and support. This week has been pretty crazy. I wish I had a ton of time to write but p-day is ending in like 20 minutes.

The highlight of my week was mission conference with Bishop Edgely from presiding bishopbric, Elder Rasband from the quorum of the 70, and the Apostle Elder Neil Anderson. It was pretty tight. I got to shake all of their hands and talk to them a little bit. Scripture they used 3 Nephi 18:24. Relate it to the statue of liberty and Jesus Christ. I really think that the mission and the experiences you get to be a part of are awesome.

Mom I need you to do me a favor. Can you please send me my USB/jump drive? I think it is in that spare bedroom in the armwhah? I just am doing some organization of the area and I need something to back my paperwork on. It would be nice to save the templates and stuff.

We 've been teaching this really cute single mom named Jessica and her little boy Justin. Justin practically can't wait to jump in the baptismal font and wants it so bad but his mom is a little bit more hesitant. She has a lot of changes to make in her life but she wants to change which is the first step right?

Well I know this email is so short! I'm so sorry! I'll be better next week promise. I love you and feel eternally grateful for the family God has given me. I don't think I could be more fortunate. You know the mission isn't just about coming to help others on their journey towards God, but you get to benefit from the journey too as you do it right. My outlook has completely changed on the blessings I enjoy in my life. I love you all and pray for you. Mom thanks for your letters to me and Jasso. They are much appreciated. You are light to all those that get to be around and interact with you. I hope you know how much I love you and the gratitude I have for you. Take care and make the world a better place 
All my love,

Hermana Lewis

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Baubtizaron! Felicidades!

Woot Woot! Sweet week man so miracle story for the day! Sister Jasso and I had our first 2 baptisms this last Saturday! So cool! I wanted to write about them last week but was short on time and wanted to make a good narration. So this is the Story of Antonio Infante and Oilver Gonzalas.

Most decisions that are worth anything take courage in this life. Such was the case for Antonio and Oilver. They escaped from Cuba some number of years ago from their communist country. They set out in a little boat where they rowed for hours by hand to escape and go unnoticed by the searching coastgaurd in the middle of the night. They were stranded in the middle of the ocean without any food and very little water for 7 days. A yacht found them a week later and resued them from dying and took them the rest of the way to America where they have been living in Miami for an odd amount of years. They decided together that they wanted to start over and start their lives a new and start over in Canada. They made their way up the country and stopped in New York when they found out that they needed visa's to enter Canada. So they called up the only family they had in New York, The Pena family. The Pena's are members in our ward. Hermano is less active but his wife is one of my favorite lady's in the ward and she always feeds us sisters good food now and again when we are in the area. They asked the pena's if they could stay with them while they waited for their visa's. So remember that SuperDomingo I told you about a few weeks back? Well that went down 3 weeks ago from last Sunday and Oilver and Antonio happened to come to New York for that weekend so the Pena's brought them to church with them. They really enjoyed the lesson on the restoration and the following tuesday my companion and I had a appointment cancel. We felt prompted to go over to Hermana Pena's to find out more about the 2 cousins that were staying with her. We sat down with her and she said ya they want to learn more and so we said great, when can we teach them. She said well, I'll call them right now. So she called them up and the 2 men were so excited that we were there they ran all the way from junction blvd and a normal 15 minute walk took them about 5. So we taught them the plan of salvation on the spot. We talked about baptism and how we all need baptism by someone with the proper authority to be exalted into the celestial Kingdom. We talked about how God's set the way for us to return back to live him but its was their walk with God and their testimonies could be obtained through their humble prayer and study. That was that. Antonio is the younger one. Probably in his 30's and Oilver is in his 50's. Antonio 's desire started and was really strong from the beginning. He had never been religious before to any extent or been baptized before and Oilver had a broader knowledge and as we explained things to him his knowledge and desire grew as well. So we started teaching on that Tuesday and Wednesday they committed to a date for baptism for the end of the month. We taught them every day for the past 3 weeks straight. They are so stinking awesome. Rock solid and they just make my little heart so proud. They were golden. I just couldn't believe how easy they were. People always say the baptisms they have they don't do anything. Sister Jasso and I felt so blessed. We had prayed for a baptismal goal that we were working for this transfer and we said 2 this month. God so blessed us to reach that goal and to start our missions together in the right way. What a great and rewarding day it was. They didn't have any problems with any of the commandments. The only thing they even had to change was stop drinking coffee but they gave it up over night. No big deal. They were baptized on Saturday and confirmed the following day on Sunday.

It was so interesting to talk to them after the baptism. All of the sudden we had this deep connection to each other. They had been in search of a new life and a change to start over. Little did they know that they were going to find it while they were waiting for their visa's in New York. Then they also told us that a few days after we started teaching them they found out that they didn't need visa's afterall to enter Canada. So they just decided to wait till after they were baptized to continue on their way. They wanted their baptism to be with family and people that they consider family and friends. They are going to keep in touch with us and then the missionaries in canada can continue teaching them and find the ward they will be going to over there and such. It is so crazy how the lord prepares the way for the people that are sukpposed to be at a certain time at a certain place. i'm very grateful for the opportunity that we had to teach these awesome Cubans! I know that God simply used us as the instruments and it could have been any missionary. Yet it was Antonio y Oilver's time. Whahoo!!!!! Woot Woot Woot! And such a rich experience to be a part of. I'm sad they are leaving soon but hopefully we will keep in touch and I told them they have to come to utah some day to see all the Mormons. lol.

The rest of our investigators look weak next to Antonio y Oilver but they are doing good. Napoleon y Yolanda are there. We only get to see them about once a week because they are so dang busy with work here. That's the thing with new york is that the people Siempre ALWAYS are running and ALWAYS working. Very little time to listen or make time for God. Don't you think that's a little bit of an oxymoron? To busy for God? So many people do it though. I think it is an eye opener for me. Napoleon and Yolanda did refer us to their sister in law though that is a member. She used to run the whole ward over in Ecuador but then she moved to New York and married a Catholic and hasn't been back since. So, we wnet over and met her this week. She is really awesome and was super nice to us. She would like to come back to church and so we are going to work with her. I don't know what it is with people and not wanting to make the effort to church. Granted you can't walk a couple of blocks like you can ever corner in Utah but if I can do they can do it right? WE even leave our house at 7 in the morning to go and get these people so that we can make it to church by 9am. So that I can make it to be the ward pianist for the ward. She is cool though and maybe we can get napoleon, yolanda, Juanita ( the member), and her catholic husband coming to church. How sweet would that be?

Jonathan is doing good. He is so up and down. This is the thing about sin. Yes you have a greater knowledge of what there is to experience. You understand the importance of opposition and you can experience first hand the consesuences yet once you experience it, it is that much harder not to fall back into it. Change is a hard process. yes we have the atonment of Jesus Christ, yes it really does work and yes it really does change you as a person but that doesn't make it easy and it takes more effort than if you never did it in the first place. It takes work, perseverance, and an obnoxious amount of tedious concientiousness of doing the little things like reading and praying every single day! I feel for him and with all my heart I so know he is capable of doing it with all my heart. Some of the other investigators we drop but he's different and he's going to make it. We just need to get him some good solid roots in the ward so that after we leave he is secured in the ward so he won't fall. His next big task is going to learn how to love and to trust other people.
Mildred and her mom Fransisca are sweet. They were a member referral from the broncs. We have been teaching them with members and it has been really good but we are having a hard time getting her to come back to church. She has been once but she works the night before and she always feels so tired. She likes what we are teaching her and always enjoy's our visits but she isn't willing to change. I'm thinking something must not be clicking because true doctrine understood changes behavior.

Found jessica and her son justin from the Elders. She is cool. Lived a crazy life in the past but is in a place where she wants to change. She is awesome. Her son justin is practically begging to jump in the font. She has some work to do though. I"m wondering if we could get justin involved with some awesome kids in the ward his age. He is only 10 but he seems so much older to me. You can tell he has had to experience and deal with a lot coming from a disfunctional home.

We were invited by one of the Sr. couples Elder and Sister Heinhold to their home for an FHE this last week. They wanted us to come and meet a cute new member family that has 2 little girls. They live in an area where they only have Elders serving because it is a little bit more rough but they wanted the 2 girls to see some sister missionaries. They were darling little girls. Bianca is 10 and Cheyanne is 14. They both said they had thought about serving missions and that the missionaries had changed their lives. It is so intersesting to see how the gospel really does change the dynamic of the home. The spirit makes such a huge difference. The Heinholds said that when they took the family home after FHE the girls absolutley loved it and that it was a memory they'll never forget. Sometimes the small and simple things are what counts.

We have an apostle coming for mission conference this week. Elder Neil Anderson along with Elder Rasband and a member of the presiding bishopbric? Ya so it should be good. That's on Saturday. Family thanks for all your prayers and your support. I love you and miss you much. May god bless you !
Love Hermana Lewis.