Monday, June 24, 2013

June 3, 2013 Lots of Lessons about the Plan of Salvation

This structure is a handy landmark -
not far from our house.
Another CRAZY week!  Read on!

Mon. May 27:  After sending emails, we bought some food at the store, and then visited with Marta in the hospital. 

Tues. May 28:  We had lunch (spaghetti!) at the Valle's house, and taught the Plan of Salvation to recent convert “O.”  :)  We visited with Marta again in the hospital, and felt the spirit so strongly as we visited with Sonia, her daughter who was visiting.  :)  We then had Ward Meeting. :) 

Wed. May 29:  We did a fair amount of contacting, then visited with “AR” and her neighbor “M.”  Afterwards, AR wanted some curtains hung up.  I tried to understand what she wanted, but instead, they all just howled with laughter at my confused face. :)  How wonderful for them - Haha.  :)  (This happens to me – a lot! )  Anyway, we then drove out to a struggling member’s house, and discovered she has become confused about some basic things (such as why church attendance is a blessing, or why the commandments should be kept), so we are patiently re-teaching her.  :)  We ended the day at Rose's house.  We taught the Word of Wisdom to “E” and “V.”  They seem to be determined people, and I pray they will progress well. :)

Thurs. May 30:  After morning studies, Hermano Montalbo (a ward member) invited us sister missionaries and the Elders for lunch at Chili's Restaurant.  :) It was super good!  Everyone get the Cajun Chicken Alfredo Pasta.  Haha  

We then visited with “L” - a less active, and then got Abigai  (a Young Woman) to come with us to visit “T” to whom we taught the Plan of Salvation.  :)  Later, we met with “M,” and then had a Family Home Evening- type group get-together at Hermano Florencio's house.  They didn't have a DVD player, so Sis. Flores and I had to come up with something fast!!!  After much talking and scripture reading about eternal families, I had everyone do an activity.  I gave every one a piece of paper, and a pen, and we all drew our family within 10 minutes.  Then we had A LOT of fun going around explaining our pictures.  SO funny!!  We had a great evening, with delicious munchies afterwards!  (I'll be sure to get the recipes within 14 more months!)
Drawing pictures of our family members.
One of the great teachings of the restored gospel is that families can be sealed together for eternity in holy temples.

Fri. May 31:  We got in member Nellie's car and visited with “N” and “A.”.  :)  They're doing well and coming to church! :)  We then visited with “D” and her family, and once again, we taught the Plan of Salvation.  :)  Woot!!  Nellie lost her phone, so we spent some time looking for it.  No good results.  :/  After we got back to our car, we drove to the hospital (a different one called Perea), and we visited with Marta and her family.  I took the lead this time, and read/explained the story of Abraham and his experience with his son Isaac.  The Lord blesses us, AFTER the trial of our faith.  I then applied this biblical story and truth to Marta and  her two week situation in the hospital.  She began to cry and bore her testimony.  Such an incredible experience with her family. :)  Side note: They all say I'm learning Spanish quickly... I dunno.   In the same hospital, we visited with member Betsy who has health problems from  past cancer treatments.  She's doing okay though.  Later, before going home to our apartment/house, we stopped at the Lopez’s.  Hermana Lopez (a member) made us mashed potatoes, toast, and hot chocolate!  :)  Fun stuff!  The people do love to feed us.

Car wash and turkey sandwiches
Sat. the 1st of JUNE!!! - I’ve completed 4 months!!  It feels like 4 months, and yet it doesn't... BUT YEAH!!  We did some service for Hermana Amaraliz by thoroughly washing her car.  :)  She made us triple cheese/turkey sandwiches!  Oh boy!! 

Hermanas Flores and Bean with Bishop Berrios
The Elders helped us fill out our monthly car report, and then we drove to the Bishop's to celebrate his birthday!!  The Puerto Ricans know how to party and how to eat.  Whoa!!

Apostasy Jenga at the Obispo's (Bishop's) party
We played Apostasy Jenga with the Elders and members, and had INTENSE sea food!!!  I had the best slushie ever made, and I gave Bishop a card (written in Spanish! – not perfect, it was a word-for-word exact translation, but the best I could do, and Bishop understood).  We then visited with AR, and on the way to the house, I ran over my first animal.  :(  I ran over a turtle.  How sad and stupid is that?!  Who runs over a turtle??  I didn't even see it- it wasn't moving, there weren't any glinting eyes, and the shell was the color of the street.  I felt so bad.   :(  My goodness.  It was a sad and weird way to end the day... 

Sun. June 2:  In Relief Society, returned sister missionary (early April) Jaz M. from Caguas came to visit her boyfriend!!  It was great to see her!  Anyway, church was great, testimony meeting was nice, and guess what- it finally hit me: we have ZERO young men!  Anyway, after church, we had our first choir get-together in the front of the chapel!  I was in charge!  We sang a short hymn, said a prayer, figured out that Sundays after church and Wednesday nights at 7pm work for everyone, and then we had another prayer to close.  I am soooo excited to be a choir director!  I've always wanted to be one, but little did I know my first experience would be in a Spanish-speaking ward in Puerto Rico!  Oh my word!  I'm on an island teaching people the gospel and teaching people how to sing!  Looooove it!  After lunch, we visited with Betsy, and then with Marta again and they're both doing much, much better.  Then we went over to J's house, to start our first lesson with her, but Sis. Flores asked me to call the Mission Nurse because her bones and back and head were hurting.  It turns out she has dengue fever!!   It's a nasty high-fever illness you get from a mosquito bite.  :(  I got many instructions from Sis. Visker, the nurse, and Joann gave us Tylenol, a gallon of juice, and some fruit to take with us.  :)  She's adorable.  We got to the house about 6:30pm and I checked Hna Flores’ temperature.  102.4 degrees!!  She went to bed, and I suddenly had unexpected free time...  Elder Acor said my music on my iPod was approved, SO AFTER HOW MANY MONTHS?? I listened to my iPod while writing and studying. :)  It was nice, but weird!  Music is very important to me.

Mon. June 3:   3am and 7am, I gave Sis. Flores more Tylenol with the hydration drink (which is juice and water mixed with a pinch of salt.  "Pinch of salt, lots of love..." Haha!  Playing nurse is fun.  :)  Sis. Flores is so upset she's sick!  It's so cute, and actually such a powerful example of a hard-working missionary.  :)  Wow.  The morning was relaxed, and around 1:30pm we drove to the chapel for the Elders to give her a blessing.  Her temp got down to 99.5 so she's getting better.  We also got Zantac from the Elders.  :)  Now, we're emailing and doing laundry at the Bishop's house. :)  Woot!  Anyway, I'm so grateful for this mission experience!  It's hard though, ’cause as much as you plan for the day, you never know HOW it's going to go, or what's going to happen!  It's crazy!  But, I love you all!  I'm sending out more letters so people watch out! :)  Thank you for your support!  Have a spectacular week!  
Love, Sister Emily Bean

Below: pictures of lessons teaching the Lord's plan of happiness for us, often called the Plan of Salvation.  It answers questions such as "Where did I come from?"  "Why am I here?" and "Where am I going?"

We are each a beloved spirit child of Heavenly Father's.
We lived with God in a pre-mortal state prior to our birth.
We are here to gain a body and be tested.  We live by faith - keeping the commandments.
God knew we would make mistakes and sin, so He provided a Savior for us.
We will be resurrected someday, and assigned to a kingdom of glory.
God loved us, so He sent His Son to help us return to Him through
the atonement.

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