Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Voy a Vic. Me muero aquí.

Morir: to die, stop living. (Thanks Spanish dictionary)
Six week shaft: A term I learned from my dear friend Sister Farmer for changing areas in your last transfer. In this case, it's seven weeks.
Voy: first person, to go
Vic: a charming little Spanish town in dead center Cataluña between Barcelona and France. It has a lot of pueblos (little cities) and a rama (branch... Not quite a ward, but almost).
Me muero aquí: a phrase my stressed trainee would often say. Basically "I'm going to die here."

We had a pretty great week. On Wednesday we had a great zone Enfoque [focus], focusing on unity, which was something that had been stressed in Concilio [leadership council] and honestly couldn't have come at a better time. We needed it. But we were also supposed to talk about teaching the word of wisdom so... we played a unity-building game of "eat the fruits and vegetables as fast as you can and go cheer on the next group." Kind of hard to explain, but it was great fun. We had kiwis. The group that had oranges all got sick after, but it was well worth it.

After that I started what was my 4th intercambio [exchange] with dear sweet Hermana Schmidt. We've sort of followed each other around the mission, and I have had the great opportunity to work, teach, see, and make miracles with her. It's always a pleasure to be with her and see the beautiful city of Zaragoza in the MANY buses that we took and ran to catch. Lots of running and great street contacts, but I wouldn't have it any other way.
With Hermana Schmidt in Zaragoza
Lleida hasn't been the easiest of areas for me and I know that as I've probably expressed in past emails, we haven't been able to see many of the fruits of our labor. BUT one day last week we met Alexandria. She was the only one on the street and we started talking to her,
"Would you like to know more?"
Really? "Can we write down your number?"
"Can we visit you on Thursday at 5?"
"Will you follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone holding the priesthood authority of God?" Ok, we didn't say that part, but it was ALMOST that perfect.
We texted to remind her and she texted back within minutes. So we went to the cita [appointment], excited to teach. That excitement turned to nerves as she let us in, introduced us to her two other super interested and similarly perfect friends, and they all sat down to listen. It's been so long since I've met someone who understands and really wants to listen and to suddenly have three of them was overwhelming in the best possible way. Lleida's looking up!

With Alexandria and friends
We had some fun citas with a member that were more like "missionary present lessons" because sweet Daniela spent most of the time talking in Romanian, to which my gift of tongues does NOT extend. Pero bueno [but hey, it’s good].
Saturday of transfer calls is always interesting. It's filled with throwbacks (just in case) and anxiously trying not to think about it.
Planning is more of a hypothetical thing because if one of you leaves... there are people that NEED to be visited.

And so I got the call to go to Vic and be with Hermana Arauco.

So the week was full of goodbyes and packing (kind of a trial run, if you think about it, which I tend not to). We had 4 eating citas (good thing we'd fasted on Sunday) and at one point literally hopped from one members' car to another's. It's good to be loved, and I love SO many of the members here. I was blessed to get to see almost everyone I needed and wanted to, including Norma (one step closer to getting her papers done) Alexandria and her friends (for the BEST plan of salvation lesson ever), and the Arrandas (My family, but the Spanish version).

It's been good. That isn't to say it hasn't also been hard. On Sunday I had a big pain in my chest that might have been troublesome as it surged and ebbed but I didn't worry too much because I'm pretty sure it was just heartache. Es una cosa de la mission [It is a thing of the mission].  But that's when you know you've come to know a little bit more what true love is like. And it's worth it.

I shared this scripture with everyone because it's one of my favorites, so I guess I'll share it with you all again as well
Mosiah 2:41 And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it.

Accidental matching outfits
So send your last letters to this address (seven weeks is plenty of time, hint hint.)
Love you all and have a great week!
Hermana Alayna Een

Hermana Arauco: has seven half-blooded siblings, and no full-blooded siblings. Is from Virginia.

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