So, email title this week is from a painful experience I had eating tacos. Hermana D had to be a witness for a marriage, so this woman could get baptized, so we went to Centro. Afterward, the woman who we helped get married owns a little taco stand, so she made us all tacitos. There were some onions on the table and I think to myself, oh onions are good, I will have some of those, so I load up the tacos with onions. TURNS OUT there was Abanero mixed in. I look at Hermana D when I start to feel the fire start in my mouth, and she looks at me too because she was starting to feel it. Then I turn red and everyone notices that I am sweating and that I am basically breathing fire. BUT I CONQUERED THE ABANERO. I am a Mexican at heart I guess, however I am not sure if I will ever eat them every again.
Monday - I tried esquites! It is elote minus the cob part, they load it up with mayo and cheese and chile and crema. It is pretty good, I mean who does not love corn right? A member kindly bought us some after Cornelio - our OLD investigator - basically told us he did not want to learn anything anymore and that some miracle worker in the campo (field) near his house healed his daughter from her hernia. I am glad his daughter is better, but not so happy that he thinks this miracle man now has the power for everything. Hopes not crushed though, BECAUSE WE HAVE 2 NEW FANTASTIC INVESTIGATORS THIS WEEK! Stay tuned...
Tuesday - I think the majority of people in Mexico have clothes from the Salvation Army and other stores like that. I saw one girl wearing a shirt that said I Love Being A Jewish Girl, and lots of grandmas wear shirts that have inappropriate phrases and things on them. I try not to read the shirts anymore. We had AMAZING weather this week, not too humid and not too hot. It was an amazing blessing compared to last week. I was not sure how much more we could last with the heat. Turns out one of the MA (member activation?) we are helping reactivate goes to 2 churches. We found out from another MA, he was telling her that it is fine that she goes to 2 churches, because he does too! I think he is missing the point. We were also looking for a reference, Marian, she lives atop a hill with 154 steps. We finally get there and she is leaving...at least we know where she lives! We made plans to visit her the next week. We found another MA, but he did not have any references for us BECAUSE apparently all of his neighboors are dead because they were all killed, he told us to never visit his house at night and to be far away from there at night too. He does not need to tell us twice! TODAY WE ENCOUNTERED ARMANDO!! One of our fabulous new investigators! He had a drinking problem, but is recovering and really wants to change his life. I can feel, and so can Hna D that he has such a strong Spirit. He kept seeing us later days during the week and kept reminding us that we were going to walk to church with him on Sunday. Heck yes we are!
Wednesday - We had capitacion (?) with Presidente Lopez today too, he really is such an amazing man, and I am so greatful for him to be my mission president! We visited another MA member, Tomas. All the members are so loving, they just have such hard lives. His wife died 3 months ago and his oldest daughter is 14, she stopped going to school because she had to take care of her mom. Now she works, and her younger sister - 11 - goes to school, and they all get to be together around 8 at night when everyone gets back from their activities. They still love the Gospel though, and we reminded them of the importance of the temple and eternal families. I am so grateful for my family! I am reminded every day of that!!
Thursday - Ate purple bananas today, super sweet and yummy! Perfect weather again!
Friday - The day that I went to my first wedding and my mouth also was in flames. Another amazing investigator today too!!!! His name is Felipe, and also has a drinking problem but is trying to change. He has not had alcohol in more than 15 days! He also went to church a lot with missionaries before, but ultimately alcohol stopped him from getting baptized. He now is in a support group now, so we are hoping he will be ready in 2 weeks! High hopes!
Saturday - We did sooooooooooo much walking today and NO ONE was home. Literally no one. I think we sat for probably 1 hour the whole day, plus lunch. We also kind of walked into a more jungly part of our area, and found chico zapote - the gum fruit stuff - and I thought Hna D was going to be attacked by some mysterious thing when she turned around in front of me and started running back to where I was. She thought she heard a snake, we did some more exploring and it turns out that it was just a lizard that had a snake like head hahahah but still, we kepy hearing weird animal noises after and decided to go work somewhere else.
Sunday - ARMANDO CAME TO CHURCH!!!!! Barely. We went to get him in the morning - he also lives atop a hill of el diablo - and we get there and his son said he went to chop firewood. We waited, but he did not return. We decided to go try to get one one of our old investigators - Jesus aka EXACTAMENTE - to come. We see he is home, and run up his steps and catch him before he can hide. Hna D basically told him to put on his shoes, and we would wait for him like 20 times. Aqui esperamos. He looked in pain hahaha he did NOT want to come. I was looking at the main street while Hna D was trying to persuade him and I SEE ARMANDO ON HIS DONKEY RIDING UP THE HILL. I proclaim half in jibberish half in spanish to Hna D that Armando is returning, and we SPRINT back up the hill to his house, and he comes to church! AHHHH!!! YAYYYYY MRIACLES HAPPEN!!!! No one was really home the rest of the day, BUT Armando going to church filled my canteen of investigators for the whole day, I was so elated!
NEWS: This week is cambias. My first 6 weeks in Mexico are done! I still have 6 more weeks of training with Hna D. OR SO I THOUGHT. I AM NOW TRAINING ANOTHER HERMANA THAT HAS BEEN HERE FOR 6 WEEKS. She is coming to my area, Hna D is heading to Palmas in Poza Rica, and I am senior comp, finishing my new comps training basically. THAT NEVER HAPPENS! When the zone leader told me, i thought he was kidding. No he was serious. I went into shock honestly. I cried a little, tried to hide it from the elders, they felt bad and gave me a snickers and told me to be happy. I feel better now, but I am super nervous!!!!!!!! Usually people only SOMETIMES train after finishing their training. Not in my case. Nervous but excited. Yes.
I love my mission, I am grateful for everyones support! Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers!!
Love, Hermana Westergard
|sunsets are beautiful!|
|got water from a well|
|fruit that chicle (gum) comes from!|
|in da jungle on a mountain|
|5 in the taxi and I get to hang out the window|
|last pday lunch with the Voladores hermanas|