H.O.L.A = Hay que: Orar, Leer, Asistir

As for the things that went on this week….it was pretty normal. BUT…I DEFINITELY ATE SHRIMP THREE TIMES THIS WEEK. okay background story: The last time i ate shrimp was when i was 9 or 10. I ate the shrimp whole with the shell and everything and it scraped my throat. Ever since then, i never wanted to eat it again! plus, it has the texture of like a worm. ANYWAY, i ate it this week (praying i wouldn’t throw up of course) aaand i actually liked it. So that was a miracle.

We also taught our mission president’s counselor’s family this week! so THAT was nerve wracking. but it went well 🙂 His wife gave me and my comp a facial today! With all kinds of fancy lights and diamond tools and stuff. It was pretty cool hehehe!

mmmmm, what else? I am running again with my companion! yay! we are eating healthy. SHE IS FROM ILLINOIS AND HAS THE CUTEST ACCENT. ahhahah and that’s about it 🙂

Sorry…no pictures right now. I’ll see if i can steal some from my comp…another virus destroyed my card. SO DONE WITH THESE VIRUSES…….here’s an old one:

cutest girls ever
cutest girls ever

moving on to the spirituaaaal side of things…

I have realized these past two weeks that when you truly are doing what God wants you to do, satan tries his hardest to tear you down and destroy you. Don’t let him. When you are doing the right thing, stick to it. Pray, read your scriptures, and go to church. Never stop doing the basic things because that is what will strengthen you enough to overcome the destruction satan causes.

Sister Richardson, my mission president’s wife, gave me some really great advice through the scriptures:

she said that when you feel that satan really is attacking you, that you should read 2 Samuel 22:2-5. She said that usually when you get a new responsibility or are on the right track, satan does all he can to bring you down and will cause you to think of all the mistakes you have made in your life and will try and get you even to the point of self-loathing. Be stronger than him.

In 3nephi 7:5 I found a scripture that REALLY stood out to me. It says “…and all this iniquity had come upon the peojple because they did YIELD themselves unto the power of satan.” key word is yield. We are stronger than the adversary, but if stop doing the basic things to keep us spiritually strong, we are letting our spiritually guard down and slowly, satan finds his way into our hearts and minds to destroy us.

In spanish we have something really cool that we say to the members…that we must ALWAYS do “HOLA”, which stands for:
Hay que:
Orar
Leer
Asistir

or we must pray, read, and attend (church). Those three key actions will strengthen us daily and weekly more than we can ever imagine. I can testify of the power of living this way. Try it out for a month and see how you feel. I promise that you will see a difference in yourself and in your life if you do it willingly and faithfully.

branch activity
branch activity

Now, going back to satan bringing us down…read the story in Ether 6. They were in a boat for THREE HUNDRED AND FOURTY FOUR DAYS. The boats we dark (with the exception of glowing stones), they were small, there were animals and people crammed together, who knows where they went to the bathroom or ate their food….imagine for a minute how AWFUL that situation would have been! Now read verses 9 and 10. Even though they were really suffering, they WORSHIPPED God all day and night. Now, why do you think they did that non stop?? Because if they stopped, I imagine that they would have been caught up in negative thoughts, leading to sorrow, leading to depression, leading to contention and yielding themselves to the devil! When we are going through hard situations, we MUST worship God if we want to be taken out of those hardships or strengthened to overcome them.

The solution to depression is worshipping God. I can testify of that. I have experienced it.

Now, another thing i have noticed is that another way satan can begin to have power over us is through our own pride. We see that example a million times in the Book of Mormon. “The pride cycle” leads people to destruction. Once we start loving ourselves more, our clothes more, our jobs more, our education more…once we start being more and more proud of ourselves, the more we distance ourselves from God. He deserves the glory. It is He who allows us to succeed, understand, progress, and prosper.

I encourage every one of you to make spiritual goals for yourselves right now. Once you acheive that goal, set another one. We must always be progressing spiritually and always have the goal to live as Jesus Christ and God our Heavenly Father want us to.

So just know that I know that these things are true. I have lived them. I have changed what i needed to change and i am still working on A LOT of things, but just know that change IS POSSIBLE. And God blesses us for changing.

Anyway, have a super super great week! love you all tons 🙂 write me please. Love, Hermana Dunne

go to church and you will always be happy and progressing spiritually

Welp, i was going to write a super, super great email this week, but the power went out and i lost a TON of time and now pday is over. SOOO, just know that this week was one of the most stressful weeks of my mission! literally gave myself a fever. BUT i am way better now. my “mom” (Hermana Alva)  goes home to peru tonight. I’m with HNA DEVEREUX now! She is GREAT. She’s from my same group! This change is going to be incredible.

The hermana leaders de:Cal,Peru,Ecuador,Mexico,Guatemala y Honduras
The hermana leaders de:Cal,Peru,Ecuador,Mexico,Guatemala y Honduras. Oh and Oregon

Read your scriptures, pray daily, go to church and you will always be happy and progressing spiritually, i promise you. We are working with a man who is getting over an alcohol addiction, and i am seeing a miracle of change in him.

I had SO MUCH more i wanted to say, but i guess it’s better to be obedient and receive blessings than disobedient (going over time) and feeling guilty.

Take care of yourselves. challenge for the week: share your testimony with someone you care about. it will mean the world to them and you will feel that your faith and beliefs will grow immensely.

UGH so sad i have to finish this without  stories but WHATEVS. Have a great week! Talk to you soon,
Hna Dunne :}

Choose wisely. Your friends. Your movies. Your music….

FIRST OFF, SHOUT OUT TO DOCTOR DUNNE, mi padre!!! Happy birthday as of three days agooooooo! LOVE YOU TONS.

Hope youre all having a reeeally superb day! Today i went bowling. Just me and Hna Alva because it’s her last pday ever in the mission and she had never gone bowling before so THAT was the most precious thing EVER!

Alva's 1st time bowling for her last P-day
Alva’s 1st time bowling for her last P-day

Really this week was just super stressful. Lots of meetings and divisions and I don’t know if the world shrunk this week, or if i grew, but i hit my head about three times daily. Added to my headache but it’s whatever.

It rained all week. All of my shoes are wet. All of my jackets are wet. I think my clothes are getting really old. My shoes are even worse. Seriously the only shoes that have lasted me this long are my Mary Jane Doc Martins. Best investment ever.

OH SHOOT! Totally forgot to tell you all a story last week. So we had our district meeting, left and went to the mamita to eat! we were super happy, ya know….eating happily and all….then BOOM the zone leaders called me and told me that two sisters in our zone GOT SEPARATED. Missionaries should NEVER be separated. One had gotten off the bus and the other didn’t. One ran to the house and I called her so I could meet up with her and look for her companion. Buuuuuut it wasn’t as crazy as i thought it would be. As we were pulling up to the apartment complex, her companion was running to her to hug her. Precious moment…precious moment. hahahhaha it was an interesting experience.

super skethy dirt staircase right by the highway that we have to walk up to get to an area we visit.
super skethy dirt staircase right by the highway that we have to walk up to get to an area we visit.

Welp, all i really have to say this week is that obedience is the most precious gift we can have in our lives. When we are obedient, we receive SO MANY BLESSINGS. There is at least one blessing for every commandment we keep, and even more come as we live Christ’s gospel. There is a scripture in Alma 50:22 that talks about this… “And those who were FAITHFUL in keeping the commandments of the Lord were DELIVERED AT ALL TIMES.”

Think about how great that blessing is. If we are just faithful to God and the commandments He has given us, He delivers us from temptations, danger, sorrow, grief, and spiritual death. He loves us so much.It doesn’t matter what you have done in the past if you have repented. But that is the key. When you repent, you are promising God that you won’t commit that sin again. Do not fall back into past sins. Avoid all temptations or situations that could lead you to commit that sin again, and push forward.

In the wise words of our beloved prophet, Thomas S. Monson, “DECISIONS DETERMINE DESTINY.”

mi papa de la mison - he was so proud of me for being a sister leader
mi papa de la mison – he was so proud of me for being a sister leader

Choose wisely. Your friends. Your movies. Your music. Your education. Your hobbies. What you do with your time. Your words. Your thoughts. The way you treat others. Your way of living. Choose wisely. Choose the right.

“Consider your ways”-Haggai 1:7

I love you all and hope you have a super great week. Email me stories about your conversion to this gospel. I’d love to hear about it. 🙂 Love,
Hermana Dunne

We need to follow ALL the words of God’s leaders

OH MY GOSH GOOD AFTERNOON! no time this week.

First off, this week was great. looooots of meetings, but we worked while we could and saw miracles. still getting used to this meeting thing. tomorrow we have consejo de lideres where the meeting is from 9am until about 7 pm so that’ll be fun.

Moving on! So this week, we were contacting (going from door to door) and it was really not super effective. most people just rejected us. so we said a prayer and felt drawn to a street and even a certain door. we knocked on his door, and Andres came out. He was incredibly receptive and let us teach him about the restoration and even a little about the plan of salvation. He told us that he wants to get baptized. just like that. Unfortunately, his cousin came to town and he wasn’t able to make it to conference…but he has all the desires to change his life! I am really excited to work with him because he truly was a miracle, and God has really prepared him to receive this gospel.

This gospel is so beautiful. In conference i thought they talked A LOT about our leaders, and united families–and good parents. I feel like that is what we need most in this time. We need to follow ALL the words of God’s leaders here on earth, and we need to give the example within our families too of faithfully living the gospel. (a talk i really liked about families was by L. tom perry)

here’s the link: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/finding-lasting-peace-and-building-eternal-families?lang=eng

The most special convert I have. Patricia Valverde. She's the strongest convert I have.  It was so touching seeing her again.
The most special convert I have. Patricia Valverde. She’s the strongest convert I have. It was so touching seeing her again.

The family is the most important social unity for God here on earth and HE WANTS to see us all together eternally again at His side. We must step up the way we’re living! I loved that Elder Carlos A Godoy talked about that if we want to be assured blessings in the future, we must analyze how we are living now and change our lives accordingly.

Here’s the link:   https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/the-lord-has-a-plan-for-us?lang=eng

Cutest girl ever
Cutest girl ever

I think three of my favorite talks though were these:

By Elder Jorg Klebingat– how to have spiritual confidence, Elder Bednar–helping others understand why we share this gospel so much, and Elder Uchtdorf—inviting us and helping us know how to find out for ourselves ALL TRUTH.

Klebingat: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/approaching-the-throne-of-god-with-confidence?lang=eng

Bednar:https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/come-and-see?lang=eng

Uchtdorf:https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/lord-is-it-i?lang=eng&query=lord,+is+it+I

Other talk i recommend re-watching or re-studying are by:

Elder Larry S. Kacher–choose your decisions carefully.
Elder Richard G. Scott–fundamental habits for securing your life in the Atonement of the Saviour
Elder Russell Ballard–STAY IN THE BOAT.
Elder Dallin H. Oaks–be humble and meek but DO NOT surrender your positions or values.

Conference really is something special. SERIOUSLY it’s like we truly have 3 Christmases every year….haha really though i couldn’t sleep i was so excited. WE ARE SO BLESSED to have a PROPHET OF GOD talk to US. really blessed.

Marlene and her kids
Marlene and her kids

Some things i want to add before i head off:

-I miss the birds in Quichuqui that did cat call sounds

– sometimes i put myself in front of people to contact them, like i did in lacrosse, when they try to walk past me when i say hi.

-If you want to get rid of a bad vocabulary or slang, go speak a foreign language for a year or two. it works pretty well.

-i can choose the portions of food i want here so i am exceedingly happy

-HELP OUT THE MISSIONARIES. the members here ASK to HELP US. and it makes life SO MUCH EASIER. there is a lot of success and unity and spirituality in this ward because the members HELP.

That’s all for now! got to go. love you all. thanks a ton for everything you do 🙂 keep pushing forward!! Signing off,
Hermana Dunne

 

me after I dyed and permed my hair.
me after I dyed and permed my hair.

I’m BACK in Calderon!

OKAY. so three things:

1- I dreamed I was wearing burkenstocks. soooo THAT tells you how much i miss those shoes.

2- i miss sloth jokes. a lot.

3- I don’t remember, so i’m just gonna move on…

branch activity
branch activity

So this week was really great! I did divisions in Ibarra and it was REALLY nice to see Ibarra again 🙂 I saw a few members I know too so that was cool. It is such a great experience doing division because i have seriously learned SO MUCH. It’s true that callings only humble you more. I love it because I can see more clearly now exactly what I need to improve and it’s helping me a lot. But shoot it was super tiring….we only taught one lesson sitting down. The other eleven were in the street, doorways, SUN and we walked A WHOLE LOT. It was a really great day…only i forgot how hot Ibarra is.

This week we had LOTS of meetings. It wasn’t the most ideal week to work, but we gave the Lord all we had when we could work.

It’s seriously the worst being sick in the mission, because NO ONE wants to stay home in the house, sick, when they could be outside changing lives! So we worked anyway and people just had a hard time understanding me through my congestion. ahha PERO VALIO LA PENA.

We saw a miracle this week.

The zone was going to end the month without even one baptism because of a lot of difficulties we had. We decided to fast as a zone for a miracle, and so we fasted–depending on the Lord–but we also work, as if everything depended on us. The next day, Rafael got baptised.

The miracle of Rafael
The miracle of Rafael

Rafael is a man other elders were teaching, but we had to go to his baptism because he seriously was a miracle. Never doubt the power of prayer, diligence, and fasting. God hears us if we do our part.

So we had changes halfway through the change and I’m BACK in Calderon! Just a different sector. It’s suuuuuper sad, but i’m also super happy.

Pros: I can see the people I taught easier, I’m with my “mom” (Hermana Alva, my first companion)in the mission again, the food has FLAVOR and is SAFE to eat, everything is more convenient.
Cons: the city is NOT as beautiful as the country….at all, my “mom” is “dying” this change (finishing the mission…), i can’t speak kichua to anyone, and calderon is the center of where the earthquakes were the strongest. gulp.

bags of beans,tostada,rice,grains,herbs and meat and they serve it in a bag at celebrations.  my companion found bugs in hers but I don't observe my food so I don't know how many bugs I've eaten.
bags of beans,tostada,rice,grains,herbs and meat and they serve it in a bag at celebrations. my companion found bugs in hers but I don’t observe my food so I don’t know how many bugs I’ve eaten.

Anyway. I am still SUPER STOKED to work here! It’s going to be really great.

If you are a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, be true to your covenants and ACT like a true follower of Jesus Christ. People are always watching and you can either help them come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ’s true gospel, or cause them to not want anything to do with it. Read Alma 39:11-12.

Those who aren’t members of this church, don’t judge the church based off of the members only. Hear what the missionaries have to say, pray to God and ask if it’s true, and then go to church and see how you feel! The gospel is PERFECT, no human being is perfect so base your decisions off of what you truly feel after praying and asking God what is true.

Something I really like from the conference is that if we TRULY believe that God desires our eternal salvation, then we MUST believe that God gave us commandments ONLY to HELP us acheive that goal of exaltation. Keep God’s commandments because God gave them to us to benefit us and protect us from sin, guilt, and sorrow.

I don’t have much more to say this week. I just hope you’re all doing great. And if you have aaaany questions, email me and ask! Talk to you all really soon 🙂

Love,
Hermana Dunne

madison.dunne@myldsmail.net