Serving as a Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint in the Texas, Fort Worth Mission

Monday, October 27, 2014

10/27/14 Week 33

Last weeks mission conference with Elder Carden - Can you find me?? (click to enlarge)

So guess what???  I have a new home! Yipeeeeeeee!!  After almost 8 months living in a cockroach infested apartment, you forget how good you could have it.  We have so much more time to plan at night now that we don't have to spend it murdering cockroaches! FREEDOM!!! Ya...I'm a little excited about our new place.  But this week has been pretty stinkin exhausting trying to move and clean 6 years of gross cockroach/elder slime off of all our furniture.  And I'm pretty sure I'm gonna look like a muscled body builder after all of this hauling furniture, boxes, and bags up and down and up and down and up and down ... I really wish we were living on the bottom floor! Haha but hey I can't complain.

As far as the missionary work is concerned...this week it was a little harder because every day we were pretty exhausted from moving, but we really are seeing miracles with la familia Herchedes! We had a super duper awesome lesson with the mom on Tuesday and she started crying and telling us everything that has been going on.  It's amazing to see how the scriptures can really answer everyone's problems.  One thing I've learned - there is a scripture for everything!  Man I love those books, they sure do make our work easier!

Also, I was able to be an English speaking missionary for a day! …live in a burgers....sleep on a tempurpedic out in a gym.....psh! Who needs that?  I'm not gonna lie, after that I knew I was called to serve Spanish speaking for a reason. I was seriously going on Spanish withdrawals by the end of the day! I missed my rice and beans.  The exchange was really good though.  I went with my Sister Training Leader to her area in Weatherford.  I love seeing the different ways that missionaries do their work and meet new people.  That is without a doubt one of my favorite parts about missionary work is meeting all the new and most of the time, very interesting people.  They crack me up! ...except for when they talk for 2 hours straight.  After limited time working on the English speaking side here, I officially understand the definition of a "Texas Talker"! Wo, Aubree if you are reading this I don't know how you do it!

Pday at the world famous Fort Worth Botanical Gardens;)
The work is still going well here. We have got 3 new families we're trying to teach.  They all are "used-to be- Catholics" but then they left that church because they decided it was false.  In other words…GOLDEN!  Yay!   Now the biggest challenge is finding them at home.  Wish us luck! 


love Hermana Bonny

Saturday, October 25, 2014

10/20/14 Week 32

Elder Craig A. Carden
Elder Carden of the Seventy came and visited our mission this week! It was soooo amazingly awesome! We had conference with him from 9am until 4pm. In my pre-mission life if someone would have told me that I was going to be in a church meeting for 7 hours I probably would've passed out and then skipped anyways and gone swimming, but I could not have been more excited to be in this meeting! He is without a doubt a man called of God:)  The spirit was so strong it even made me shed a tear..which for me that's a pretty big deal. 

In preparation for this meeting we all had to write a short talk on recognizing the spirit and then Elder Carden was going to call on some of us to give our talks - ahhh scary! So of course guess who do you think got to give their talk? Yep, me!  Ahhhh!  But it went super bueno:)   Then afterwards President Ames picked a few missionaries to go and have interviews with Elder Carden and guess what?! He asked me! Yayayayay! It was one of the #1 most amazing experiences in my whole life.  The things he told me are changing the way I do missionary work.  For reals.  He is called of God! 

Sisters Carden, Limon, Bonny, and Ames
In other sad news....Maria is not getting baptized...YET! We aren't giving up on her. She knows it's true, she just decided to go to the wrong source for answers and came across tons of anti-mormon stuff online and it scared her:( Satan does not make these things easy. From the day this amazing girl decided to be baptized I have never seen the adversary working so hard! It has seriously been a battle, but Hermana Limon and I are NOT letting him win!

Being a trainer is still challenging.  Hermana Limon and I have had our ups and downs.  She is a great missionary.  Some of the most spiritual times I've had on my mission have been when she's sharing her conversion story to investigators.  It's powerful stuff!

The other day we were brave enough to stop a party going on downstairs full of big black guys so we could sleep.  ...scariest thing I've ever done!  We went and prayed for bravery in the bathroom, because it was the only place the music wasn't pounding.  Then we marched downstairs and pooped on their party.  Haha!!
Feliz Cumpleanos!

The Skyhawk 5!  One high school, one mission.
I feel like I am finally learning how to listen to the spirit.  It's about time right??   I've realized  that growing up in Utah definitely has it pros and cons.  When you grow up in a home with the spirit and friends that are always doing good things, its harder to recognize the spirit because you never really had to learn how.  Many of my choices were kind of already made for me most of the time.  That's why its so amazing to see these people we're teaching, many of them kids or teenagers, WANTING to be at church.  I don't think I had that attitude when I was their age.  They inspire me!  We seriously live in a bubble in Elk Ridge/Salem, not realizing what it's like to live without the gospel around us!

Anywho I'm just gonna send a bunch of pics because I don't have tons of time today!  But pretty much this week was AMAZING! THE CHURCH IS TRUE!

Love Hermana Bonny

Tacos de Lengua (tongue tacos) - Yum!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

10/14/14 Week 31

Mi Familia

Wow I swear I say this every week, but this week was CRAAZY!!! I thought I was used to the whole waking up at 6am thing...but for some reason this week every time the alarm went off I felt like my head had just hit the pillow.  Spreading the gospel is hard work!

This week we've really been focusing in on Maria.  Can I just start out by saying that she really is the biggest miracle and most rewarding experience I've had so far on my mission?  Seriously I can't even tell ya'll how much I love this girl! Hermana Black and I met her around the third week I was here, after relentlessly knocking on her door day after day, for some reason that neither of us could explain.  Normally we don't spend that much time knocking doors of old investigators, but we just always felt like we should try! Then one day FINALLY her mom let us in to teach them! At first we taught her mom and her other sister, and Maria was kind of in and out.

She told us yesterday that she thought I was super weird at first....haha. but then after we kept coming over she started warming up to us.  She really liked the idea of baptism, just because we explained how "its a way to be clean of all our sins!".  She thought that sounded great but the idea of a Heavenly Father that loves her still just wasn't a very real thing for her.   But we kept coming and teaching her, and very slowly but surely the lights started coming on, and these past few months I've literally watched the spirit convert her right before my eyes!  It's amazing! As a missionary there isn't anything more joyous to hear than -  "After I read the Book of Mormon, I just felt so good! I know I'm ready to be baptized!"  ...ya was VERY hard to not start jumping for joy around her garage! She does know its true.  But now with her baptism so close dumb Satan is seriously throwing everything at us and her that he can! Sigh......maybe that's why I've been so tired this week, battling with the adversary for the salvation of souls! It sounds so intense when you put it like that:)

Zone Conference or high school?  We all went to SHHS:)

On Thursday we had a huge zone conference and we all watched "Meet the Mormons" LOVED IT!!  All of you non-missionaries, GO SEE IT! It's amazing! And then when you listen to the song at the end think of me:)   As a missionary we are hardly ever able to "discover the song before its cool".  We just don't have time (or access to music) for that. But THAT SONG has literally been my mission theme song! Yippee!

Love ya'll soo much! Pray for Maria!!:)

Hermana Bonny

Coming and going last month with Hna's Limon and Black

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

10/6/14 Week 30

Well this week was pretty fantabulous as usual! Especially con la Conferencia General! yipeeeeee!!:):) LOVE LOVE LOVED Conference!   There is literally nothing better for us missionaries then to hear las palabras de nuestras profetas for a whole 2 days!!  I would say two of the themes were building stronger families and following the prophet.  I've got a ton of notes that I'm excited to start deciphering! My favorite talk was probably Elder Bednar's because we were sitting next to Maria, who is getting baptized in 2 weeks!  It was perfect for her!  When he started out with "I'm going to speak to those people who aren't members", my heart literally jumped into my throat, and you know I'm not emotional!  But it had been so stressful trying to get Maria up to the church and a lot of other stuff was going on, so I was sitting there praying hard that someone would say something that would relate or stick with her.  Woot woot for Elder Bednar!

Tres Leches Heaven
We quickly found out that after conference is the perfect time for visiting members - animados para la obra misional! Last night we stopped by a family who was in the middle of their post-conference fiesta and we were shocked by how excited they all were to see us!  They sat us down, fed us pieces of tres leches dessert bigger than our heads, offered exchanges, agreed to invite all these people over to have family nights with them, and gave us 2 referals.  We extend a huge "Gracias" to all the GA's!

Totally awkward mission story #2  - Well we were visiting this less active sister and had we just finished a super awesome chastity lesson (always fun).   We were just about to leave when her mom got home and was like "Oh yay the hermanas are here! I have a present for you!"  (gulp) Then she goes and grabs these 2, umm, super flattering latina dresses. I had to check and make sure I hadn't just been teleported to Mexico in the 80's!  She said that she's a little gordita and she can't fit into them so she wants us to have them.  Then she tells us to go and try them on in her room, and unfortunately for us she's the type of lady you can't really say "no" to.  We just thought, ok fine we will just go try them on super fast then split.  So there we are changing in her room when all of a sudden the door starts opening!! Ahhh!  So I hurry and dive behind the bed and Hna Limon rushes to try and pull her dress up right before the lady's HUSBAND walks in the room!! Ahhh awkward!!!!!!!!!!!!!  He just looks at Hna Limon, then at my little lead peeking out from behind the bed, closes his eyes and runs out! Then, just when we think we are safe, she barges in to show us how to lock the door (or at least I think that's where she was going with it..), but when she noticed us standing there in our strange white spandex, she bolted as well!  Do you feel awkward yet just reading about this?? 

 In other news, we just about got swept away to Oz!  We had the storm of all storms here in Texas.  Fort Worth and Dallas are a mess. Half of the city lost electricity for 4 days, including stoplights!  Luckily, I live the south side which wasn’t quite as bad, but I was still literally scared for my life for about 15 minutes.  We had to eat dinner with nothing but 2 little lanterns at the Bishops house, something I won't soon forget! 
Remember the Fort Worth Stockyards?  This was the scene!
Hail from nearby- its the one on top for those who aren't chicken farmers or chefs
After losing around 20 pounds since I got to Texas my weight seems to have leveled off.  In fact, we had so many goodies over Conference weekend that I've actually gained 3 back.  Tres leches cake was worth it!

Basically I just love our investigator Maria sooo much!!  She is getting baptized in 2 weeks and it has literally been the most incredible process to watch her change and understand things for herself.  I know I'm the one that is here to help her, but watching her slowly but surely go through her own conversion has helped my testimony grow so much!  I can't imagine these changes if these things weren't true - Bottom line.  I get to watch the spirit work in people every day. It's amazing and I love it here!  La iglesia is tan verdadera!  Don't any of you ever take your testimonies for granted ok??  SHARE IT!! 

Hermana Conejo