February 2, 2015

Week Fifty-Nine: Recognizing Our Divine Attributes

Isabella Ortiz, one of the cutest little girls alive. I love her so much. She is almost two years old and is learning to talk. Whenever she sees us, she says, "Umama" (like, Hermana in her own special way). She is adorable.
Area: Penco
Companion: Hermana Romney
Hermana Romney's Blog: Last Letter Home

Dear familia,

I am not sure how much time I have to write and I have a ton of pictures. I might just write a description of all of the pictures that I send.

A meal that we had the other week. It is pasta with a meat sauce ... but WAIT,
there's more! French fries and a fried egg. And we ate it all in like,
15 minutes with a dessert. That's Chilean Almuerzo for ya.
This week, the big news was that Carolina and Andrea made the decision to get baptized this week sí-o-sí. They have been off and on for the past year and a half, but they are finally accepting that they are already basically Mormons ... so they made the decision. I am sooo excited! I have never felt the Spirit so strongly in my whole life as I have in their house. I feel like their conversion is a miracle based on love. Hermana Romney and I have loved this family even when they haven't kept their commitments. We have stuck with them and showed them our confidence in them, so now they are starting to feel the confidence of God as well. I know that once they get into that baptismal font, there is no going back! They are rockstars and are going to make great, life-long members.

Andrea and Carolina Mejias. Don't they just look like Mormons??
I love them so much!!
Claudia is doing really well. She is the lady with her four girls in the picture below (Macarena, Leonora, Renata, and Amparo). I don't know how, but she faces every single trial with such ease and patience. She is an incredible woman! The only thing that impedes her from getting baptized is her family. They are all super super Catholic, and every time she starts to talk about the church with them, they get angry and say hateful things. The good news is, she has been coming to church with her daughters to the classes as well and they all love it so much. I love this family.

We had a mini cambio with Hermana Garces and Hermana Tew this week. Hermana Garces is training Hermana Tew, and they have had a lot of weird adventures with illnesses this cambio, so we figured that they were ready to switch things up a bit. I went over to Lirquen with Hermana Garces and I was soooo amazed at how much love that girl has to give. In every house, she just shined with the pure love of Christ. The crazy thing is, I don't think she recognizes how awesome she is. I feel like as women, we just generally do not realize how great we are. Personally, I am so willing to see the great attributes of others ... but really slow to see the good attributes of myself. It's all a learning process, and I am so grateful that Heavenly Father has given me this calling to help others to learn it as well.

This is Valeska and I. When we went to Chillan with Hermana Romney,
I was praying so hard for reasons that I don't know why that someone
I knew would recognize me and say hello to me. Valeska was the answer
to my prayer. She always went out with us when I was in Coyquen and
she taught me so much about Spanish. I love her so much and even more now
that she has been a direct answer to my prayers.
We are working with the members a lot more and more and more. I am convinced that that is the only way to do missionary work well. We are seeing fabulous results. All of our investigators are progressing, we had a huge church attendance on Sunday (134), and we are seeing a lot of trust from the members. God is hastening his work and it is going to continue to grow!! I am so excited to be a part of that work right now at this very moment.

Okay, the rest of my letter is going to be pictures with captions. I love you all so much! Have a great week and know that I am thinking and praying for you all a lot. Katie, I sent you a letter in the mail with a Chilean dulce. I hope it finds you well.

Love, Laney

Cleaning day ... 
We had a cleaning day for the mission. I am here wearing my Chilean apron
(I swear, every single grandma here wears an apron just like that or more hideous.
I just couldn't wait to buy it). We had sooo much trash and we were cleaning
our little cabin for 5 hours and it still wasn't clean.
You guys are saints for renting to missionaries.
We got thug hats instead of cool tee shirts for the zone
this cambio. Flaite for life.
Penco zone activity on the beach.
Penco Zone.
Thug. :) All of the elders like to talk using super Chilean slang. Even the kids
that don't know Spanish know all of the slang phrases. Corrupt. :)

Look who I saw in the bus!! Berenice and Hermana Mabel!! :) I love them!
I actually saw a ton of people when we were in Tome writing. I saw one guy
that I had contacted a million times (every time we contacted him, he
wanted nothing to do with the church ... but I talked to him anyways). When he
saw me, I was in my street clothes from the beach still. He looked at me twice
 and said, "That girl's a Mormon." Hahaha, at least they know it!

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