We had a sister activity today and it went super well, but for that I have limited time! We stuck suckers in the sand and one sister had to guide the other one, blindfolded, to search for the investigators. Some of the sticks were colored yellow - "golden" investigators ready for baptism. It was on finding with the Spirit. It was really fun! I'm a little sunburnt.
I had my first companion exchange as a leader this week. It's different! Because as a leader, you don't ask the questions, you answer them. Then, you might wonder, who answers our questions? It's a good question! But I really enjoyed it and I hope we helped those sisters.
I tried pastelon this week. It's like lasagna, but with fried ripe plantains instead of noodles. It's surprisingly good.
Well I'm out of time already, but lots of love to all of you alla afuera. Good luck to all of those starting school now or soon!
Vega Baja is so beautiful! We had such a lovely week. In Vega Baja we cover 7 pueblos, so it's easily the biggest area I've had. But the great thing is that we can drive to the other pueblos, so they get attention too.
My companion is the lovely Hermana Sanchez. She's going home in 5 weeks, but she's not trunky. She loves the mission and so do I.
I thought I would explain some cultural things about Puerto Rico. In a list!
Every time someone enters your house, you must offer them something to drink.
Every time you enter a room, you must shake hands or kiss cheeks with everyone.
If you are a foreigner, you must eat the food that they offer you. They will be offended if you do not. For some reason this rule doesn't apply if you are Puerto Rican.
Every time you see someone eating you must say, "Buen provecho."
Women's styles: muumuus. All day every day. With plastic shoes.
The States are "alla afuera." Roughly translated: "out there."
Coffee is the cultural drink of the island.
Cultural things of the mission:
Lots of love to all of you! I took a lot of people off the list this week. Well! Good luck to everyone, especially if you are starting school!
"AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH" *picks up the phone* "Buenas noches, habla Hermana Kirkland."
"Haha, hi Hermana Kirkland, how are you?"
"...................I'm okay, how are you, President?"
"I'm just great. Are you doing okay?"
"Great, okay, well Hermana Kirkland, the Lord has decided [at this point I have to sit down because my chikungunya-weakened knees started to give out] to call you as Sister Trainer Leader, and we have decided to assign you to be Hermana Sanchez's junior companion in Vega Baja."
Needless to say I didn't sleep last night. For those of you who don't know what a STL is, it's basically a zone leader for sisters. For those of you who don't know what a zone leader is, basically this means responsibility. Hoo boy. I read recently in a conference talk, "don't ask for tasks to match your abilities, but for abilities to match your tasks." It's good motivation to get on your knees.
We met a fun person this week! Her name is Tiara, and she's an agronomist, which I loved because our ward mission leader in San Sebastian is an agronomist as well. We finally contacted her this week - she was one of the elder's investigators - and first we had to help her plant. For a thank-you gift she gave us both a plant of our own! I'm so excited. It's faith in action! And then we talked. She's read through 2 Nephi 13 and she is really good at understanding it and applying it to her own life. I'm a little sad that I don't get to keep going with her, but Hermana Paniagua will do a good job.
Well, I love you! Have a wonderful week!
P.S. It did take me a whole day to remember that the word for "sequia" en ingles es "drought." Oops :)
So this week was smoke week; because of the record dryness, fires just keep starting. I've heard it's spontaneous combustion, but I'll keep listening.
Also, sorry if I owe you a letter - I am out of stamps. Hopefully I'll get to the post office soon.
Yesterday we had the coolest testimony meeting I've ever been to. We've been reading the Book of Mormon as a mission, and yesterday we all finished together. And then the entire mission met up for the second time since I've been here and we had a two hour testimony meeting. As well you might imagine, there was a significant line to go but Hermana Partridge and I went up and waited together. All the missionaries were bearing their testimonies in about one minute, and the Spirit was so strong! Plus I got to see all of my favorite mission people and hear about everyone's recent miracles and my old areas.
I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I know that it was translated by Joseph Smith and that he was the first prophet of our dispensation. I know that this church is God's kingdom on earth and I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.