Category Archives: Ecuador

LIFE is hard, NOT the gospel

Hey hey heyyy!! Great afternoon everyone!

I have a few funny stories to tell you all.

1. I had divisions with HNA ROJAS!!! I missed her soso much. She’s just ALWAYS happy. Honestly, when we were working together in her sector everyone was SO MEAN. We got looooots of rejections. But she just kept smiling, and laughing, and showed her faith by still talking to everyone she could . She really inspired me. But SIDENOTE: on the way to her sector, while we were on the bus, these two men hopped on and started rapping. We didn’t pay much attention but then they started doing a FREESTYLE. One of them, dreds and all, came up and started freestyling about ME! I felt sooooo awkward because i’m A MISSIONARY and i just covered my face. But he was saying things like “you’re more beautiful than shakira” and he rapped about my rose ring (props to Elder Anderson for sending it!) and the apple I was eating……it was hilarious but super awkward. He finally moved on to other people, but at the end he came back to me and gave me a free CD of his raps and then blew kisses to me….really odd experience.

2. When Hna Rojas and I were companions and she got changes, I gave her some floss to take with her because dad packed me up with TONS. So she told me that she got to her new sector and found the floss and thought it was candy. She licked it and said it was “too spicy” and she didn’t like the candy! So she put it away for a while until her companion asked if she could use it. So, as she flossed her teeth, Hna Rojas snuck around the corner and spied on her to see how to use it. HAHAHHAHA. We were laughing so hard when she told me that story. I LOVE HER!

me and hna. Roajas
me and hna. Roajas

In other news, a girl from our ward here got called to serve in the Los Angeles Temple’s visitor’s center!! They only gave her a month to prepare! Pretty cool though!

Honestly, I feel like Heavenly Father is really, really blessing us for all our hard work, determination to help others, and diligence in everything…we really are giving the Lord our all and we work super well together! This sunday we receive changes so hopefully neither of us gets changed!! We are even seeing a dad, who’s the only person in his family who’s not a member, is actually listening to us…WILLINGLY. Before he didn’t want anything to do with the church! God really is great.

This is where I have to walk while walking in my area!
This is where I have to walk while walking in my area!

Also, I want to testify of the reality of opposition. When you work hard and are doing everything God wants you to, opposition comes in. You see trials or problems or stress….just SOMETHING happens to keep you on your toes and remember God. Not every trial necessarily comes from God, but every trial DOES cause you to remember Him. Life keeps us humble. There’s a quote i really like from the talk “The Fourth Missionary” by Laurence E. Corbridge that says, “Often we are deceived to think that the gospel is harder than what it is. LIFE is hard, NOT the gospel…there is NO aspect of the gospel of Christ that is beyond your capacity.”

 looks like the grand canyon?!?! we were in la mitad del mundo
looks like the grand canyon?!?! we were in la mitad del mundo

This gospel helps us through the trials life throws at us. Honestly, if I didn’t have this gospel I don’t know HOW i would deal with all the hardships and trials that come in life. It would be very, very difficult. Because as we have faith in Christ and His Atonement and we truly and completely repent of our sins, we have the opportunity to be baptized exactly as Christ was baptized…and receive the remission of our sins. Receive the peace we look after…receive the forgiveness and mercy of God. And then we receive the gift of the Holy Ghost to comfort, guide, and testify to us daily of the truth and how to overcome the trials. I testify that Jesus Christ lives. He guides this church through His prophet, Thomas S. Monson. I testify that the Holy Ghost is part of the trinity and that He really does guide and protect us physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I can testify of it beause i have experienced it.

Trust in this gospel. Pray to know if this gospel is true. Trust that God will answer you if you ask sincerely. David O. McKay once said,
“The greatest battles you will ever fight will be within the silent chambers of your heart.” In order to avoid those battles, make sure you strive each day to do God’s will so that your divine nature and your carnal nature can be closer intuned. You will receive blessings.

hna obendorf's house. SHE IS A VERY COOL PERSON AND MISSIONARY
hna obendorf’s house. SHE IS A VERY COOL PERSON AND MISSIONARY

HAVE A GREAT WEEK! LOVE, HERMANA DUNNE

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I am very comfortable with this life.

Not only am i spritually healthy right now, but i am being healthier physically 🙂 hehe not sick anymore, ayyy!! Anddd i only eat fruit basically with hna deveraux and we are running so that’s a nice feeling.

I made a healthy Aselga (have no idea what that is in english)/cheese/veggie soup and i got over my sickness faster 🙂 hehe!

This week went really well! We had made a calendar on sunday and passed it around during relief society so during the week we had a member to come with us EVERY DAY. Greatest blessing ever! We are seeing a lot more progress because the members are helping us out even more 🙂

we got yummy Halloween candy
we got yummy Halloween candy

One day when we went out with a member, we contacted one of their references and the person started talking to us in ENGLISH. coolest thing ever! I guess she grew up in New Jersey or New York but she spoke really well. I could hold the conversation alright, but when we started talking about the gospel, i COULD NOT express myself and i got super embarrassed and i guess my face turned red -__- I guess i will be working on that these next few months…cuz if not, THAT’S GONNA BE AWKWARD when i get home…

I dont have much more time left here 😦 It is a really odd feeling. I am very comfortable with this life…It’s a super healthy lifestyle and i love truly seeing the change in everyone…their change, studying the scriptures, and going through the hardships has truly changed me and I will keep changing me. I like living life this way because you are forced into awkward or uncomfortable or not ideal situations and you just gotta work with what you got! And as you work through those rough times, you grow and you get closer to God because He truly is the only One who can bring you out of those down times.

me and hna. Roajas
me and hna. Roajas

I’ve been actually reflecting a lot on what i have learned and liked up until now in my mission. Something i have realized is that my absolute hardest times out here have been my most favorite because I have changed something about myself and I truly only had my Heavenly Father to rely on to pull me out of it. Sure, it was hard in the moment…sure, i felt alone and weak…but in the end, I found strength and comfort in God’s promises. When we go through rough situations, it is to learn, grow, and overcome in order to become more like our Brother, Jesus Christ. Trust in Him. Keep God’s commandments and watch the blessings pour down upon you. It has me truly convinced of God’s love for me. He loves me unconditionally. He helps me when I’m weak. Living this gospel truly is the way out of depression or sadness. I know it. I have experienced it. I testify that Christ blessed us with this gospel so that we could truly LIVE it. And by living it, we receive a testimony of Christ’s true gospel and love because we see the blessing and the way it strengthens us.

This satuday, we passed by someone who was recently baptized in June and wasn’t coming to church. They are the only member in their family and are experiencing  a lot of opposition. When we came, she hugged us as if she had known us well even though we had never met. She ended up coming to church with us the next day. While we were there, she started to tear up and told me that this church truly is just HAPPINESS. She said how much she loves this gospel and Christ because He allowed her to find a way out of the hard times. She could feel at peace and she could feel Christ’s pure love. She almost made me cry too.

cute doggie
cute doggie

He loves us infinitely. He has blessed us so much, honestly I don’t know where i would be in my life right now if i was without it. It has become my life and will stay that way even after the day i die. I definitely think i took it for granted before i came out here on a mission…i didn’t realize what a blessing it is–my feelings are really indescribable right now. AH! My heart is full.

On another note, we are planning a thanksgiving feast for lunch for the last thursday of the month! The majority of our zone are northamericans so it’s a prettttty big deal. haha really though. 🙂 It’ll be good.

BBQ dinner with my group
BBQ dinner with my group

This week i also had a cough attack during a lesson to the point where my eyes were watering and turned red so THAAAAT was embarrassing! hahahha for real though ahhh.

ahem. okay last, but not least, we talked with a young man this week and he started telling us about his past beliefs. He said he used to go to a church where the mixed tree substance from the orient of Ecuador with some hallucinagines (and he told us that some people consider it to be drugs but “it’s not drugs”) and then they take those…..drugs…..and meditate. That is how they worshipped God and he said that -somehow–it is based on Christ’s doctrine. He said “it was a really cool church until our leader started telling us that Jesus Christ comes every 40 years and that HE was Jesus Christ”. It was a really odd experience. We’ll see if he keeps wanting to know more about the church cuz he was kind of lost.

HAHAHA! Welp, that’s it for the week! 🙂 Hope you all have a really really great week 🙂 hehe I love you all.

Stay strong. Push forward. Don’t lose your faith. Trust in God. Be obedient.
Love,
Hermana Dunne 😀

ps- about 30% of the people guess i’m from the U.S, 30% guess Holland, 30% guess Switzerland, and 10% guess either canada, australia, or england. HAAAA fun fact nada mas.
my question is, am i REALLY THAT white?!

I almost got electrocuted !!!

GUESS WHAT! This week I lost my voice for the first time ever!! It was pretty cool for about an hour. Buuuuut we lost lots of time this week because I had to stay at home like a day and a half. Basically just the common cold, sore throat, and body aches. But all is better now! ayyyy!

So WOW. another shocking thing (hehe)…the shower head shocked me this week. haha it’s hilarious how they have electric wires hanging around and metal handles in SHOWERS here. I mean, it’s probs just OUR house though…..

So hahah okay so this week we had Consejo de Mision where all the zone leaders and sister training leaders meet with President, the asistants and secretaries and talk about what we can do better in the mission. It was super fun. We even got Sister Richardson to do a jumping picture with the Hna Leaders. 😀 (no, i dont have that picture -_-) Afterwards, i was heading back home with Hnas Quizhpe and Irepan and we were in the metro and all of a sudden all the lights turned off and the metro shut down and we got stuck. IT WAS SO SKETCHY. We freaked out just a little bit! But then we escaped out the emergency doors and hopped into another metro.

Me, hna Irepan & hna Quizhpe de Mexico y Loya, Ecuador when the metro broke down.
Me, hna Irepan & hna Quizhpe de Mexico y Loya, Ecuador when the metro broke down.

Moving on to the IMPORTANT things now…

JHON AND NOEMI GOT BAPTIZED!!! They have the COOLEST story ever. Their son, David, was able to baptize them. 🙂 First, David and his wife Paola got baptized first about four months ago. Then their sisters got baptized. Then three of their friends. AND NOW DAVID’S PARENTS!

Jhon &Noemi's baptism
Jhon &Noemi’s baptism

Also, i really wanted to talk about a family we’ve been visiting. They are seriously a miracle. It’s the Peralta Bajaña family. Leonell, Tatiana and their two daughters, Natacha and Romina. Here is their story.

0. We had been praying to find families.
1. I ran into a woman i had contacted a while back and she told me to go to her house the next day.
2. At her house, we were going to teach her and asked if we could invite her sister and sister’s husband to join us..even though she told us they were busy, we asked and they JUMPED off their seats to join us.
3. Every time we have invited them to church, they have come.
4. Every commandment we teach, THEY KEEP. Even things that are hard for them like coffee!
5. This last sunday, only Leonell made it to church. We asked where the others were…he said they didn’t have a way of getting to church by bus or anything because they were going through a rough time economically…he’s the only one who made it because HE WALKED TO CHURCH. He walked about five or six miles just so you all know.

Romina & Natacha
Romina & Natacha

This gospel is amazing. Once you feel the joy of it, you won’t want anything else. 🙂 It’s brought me to tears of joy many times…i know that it’s true and that it is the reason i have had such great joy here in the mission. Take the time to ask God whether this church is the true church…sincerely. You will feel this truth if you ask sincerely, with real intent and a willing heart. Ponder on Christ’s words. 🙂

I love you all. Have integrity this week. Set the example. Serve others. Stand up for what’s right. Respect yourself and your worth. Respect everyone else’s as well. 

Love,

Hermana Dunne 🙂

p.s. I had McDonalds for the first time in over a year and it actually wasn’t all that great. ( that’s the picture at the top of the post)

 

God is merciful. Trust in His timing and His unconditional love.

GOOD AFTERNOON EVERYONE!

Today was SOSO GREAT! k, so today we went to Guayabamba and went to the ZOOOO!! As a district and the sisters from the other district! (we’re the only two sister companionships in our whole zone, so that’s fun)

DSCF0214

 

I saw a Tapir. Ya know those elephant/pig animals in ice age? THEY EXIST. I’ll send a picture, no worries.

the tapir
the tapir

 

Well I don’t have much time this week, but i want to testify that God is merciful and loves us unconditionally. I finished the Book of Mormon again and asked God afterwards if it’s true. He strongly confirmed to me that it is. He is so merciful that He has given us MORE scripture to help us a million times more in this life. Read it, love it, live it.

I saw God’s mercy in a lot of different things this week. There are too many miracles to write down, but here are a few of them:

I ate 7 burritoes one day for lunch. okay, really though….no one feeds us burritoes…just RICE. so THAT was a miracle.

typical food of the month. Coleda Morada & Guaguas. gua gua is a kichuan word for baby.
typical food of the month. Coleda Morada & Guaguas.
gua gua is a kichuan word for baby.

 

We met this man named Paul. He is this huge, intimidating guy and honestly i walked into the lesson thinking “shoot, if i say something wrong he could probably kill me!” BUT, he turned out being a SUPER NICE GUY. He took down his “tough guy” wall and opened his heart and was SO full of the Holy Ghost afterwards that he was almost dancing around the room, arms wide open, saying “i have never felt this kind of joy before!” Craziest 180 ever. He’s a cool guy.

Also, I havent talked much about the people we’re teaching, but we have been teaching the parents of some people who recently were baptized about three months ago. Their names are Jhon and Noemi. They will be getting baptized this friday! They passed their interviews and are extremely anxious to be baptized 🙂 GOSH it’s so exciting.

We also found THREE families this week! One of them (the Peralta Bajaña family) came to church ALL THREE HOURS and are preparing to be baptized the 22nd! They are the sweetest family ever, and i LOVE working with them.

There are lots more but i don’t have any more time. Just know that God is merciful. Trust in His timing and His unconditional love. Trust in His power to do anything.

DSCF0250

HAVE A GREAT AFTERNOON! love, Hermana Dunne :}

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

God will strengthen us and if we give it our all, He promises us blessings.

DO WHAT THEY THINK YOU CAN’T DO.

That’s the name of a talk given by Elder Eyring (april 21, 1988) you should definitely read it ASAP. It is such an inspiring talk. Especially since school is starting and all…definitely worth your time.

Okay so my companion reminds me SO MUCH of Shiloh Jackson. holllla. She’s great. Also, there is a redhead (sorry bout it) in my district, Hermana Smith, AND she is SO great! And reminds me tonnns of Kelsey Jost. And then there is a new elder in the zone who is exactly like Joe Ricken. I don’t know if I just see them that way because I miss those people, but they make me feel more at home.

me and my comp at Lago de Mojanda
Me and my comp at Lago de Mojanda.  We weren’t expecting the cold rain.

So, as i’ve said earlier, our sector is kind of rough. The catholic and Evangelist churches are very prominent here and teach their members lies about our church and that they cannot listen to “the mormon missionaries”. So, it’s only been a little rough. However, this week we fasted to see a miracle, and we did.

We hiked up to the very last house on the volcano, and we found a man with his daughter. He told us that we could share our message with him, so we did. At first he seemed like a super tough guy; wearing a tight shirt to excentuate his muscles, standing tall above us, with a stern, serious face, and with his arms crossed he heard us out. As we taught, he had a lot of questions where he tried to stump us, but the Spirit was really strong. When I thought i didn’t have the answer, I opened my mouth and the Spirit gave me the words. Seriously, I testify that the Holy Ghost works through the Lord’s servants. When my companion was speaking, i prayed asking Heavenly Father to give me the words to say through the Holy Ghost, and as I began to speak I literally felt a power come over me. I felt a kind of energy behind my eyes, around my tongue, and I spoke the thoughts that came to my mind. I’m not so sure I believed much in the Spirit truly giving people words to say in the moment they need to say them until I came on this mission and learned for myself that it is true.

The more we talked, the softer his face got, his arms uncrossed and he changed his attitude completely. He said that he would love to learn more. I don’t know if we are only “planting the seed” by teaching him the basics and leaving him time to truly pray and come to know that it’s true, or if we will see him make a covenant with God. All i know is that we did what God wanted us to do in that moment.

Fasting is rejoicing because fasting brings miracles.

Okay, sidenote…I just have to say how much i miss fall in Oregon. Rain is starting here, it’s super cold and wet…but it’s not like Eugene! There aren’t leaves on the ground, or carmel apples, or cross country races, or time to bundle up in the house and watch a movie with hot chocolate. I miss my puppy willy…and i miss playing lacrosse. A LOT. Just have to throw that out there. It’s gorgeous here… but it’s nothing like fall in Eugene!

ALMOST EVERYTHING that happened Sunday was awful. I’ll fill y’all in a little bit…

I burnt the pot boiling water (hableme en serio), we were late leaving and had to take a taxi up the volcano (where usually a taxi is $2) we paid $5 only to arrive to the meeting place and see family (investigators) who were going to go to church with us wave at us and hike up to their house, ditching us…then we got to church, and hardly anyone came–no investigators, hardly any recent converts, and less people returning to church. It was rough but I still gave my talk. Then the sun burnt me bad (third time this week) and we got caught in the rain and mud at night. Definitely NOT ideal. I tried reflecting on the day and what blessings I saw but the only thing i could come up with is that my talk went well (i didn’t stutter…and people paid attention!) Aaaaand the fact that I was breathing and had the energy to hike up the volcano. (Seriously with the faja wrapped around your waist after eating it is seriously difficult to breath!!)

At church with my companion and sisters Diana and Laura
At church with my companion and sisters Diana and Laura

All I know is that the adversary never stops…but we’ve got to keep puttin’ along! God will strengthen us and if we give it our all, He promises us blessings.  Through our diligence, fidelity, and prayer of faith we receive ALL glory and victory. So keep up the hard work! Don’t let ANYONE or ANYTHING get you down! You have it all!

I love you all and hope you have a super great week! In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Love, Hermana Dunne :}