July 01, 2014

Life is an Adventure!!!!!!!!!

Well, this is going to be very scattered and I will not have time to proofread this. So here I am apologizing in advance.

This week has been insane. Mariela y Fernando got married Friday morning at 10 in the Registro Civil! And then that night they were both baptized! They were confirmed members of the Church and received the Gift of the Holy Ghost this past Sunday. I am so proud of both of them, and they are already helping us visit other members and want us to teach the discussions to their kids!

The other day Hna Gunter and I went out to visit with a less active family. Unfortunately, they live about 20 minutes from our apartment, in a very muddy part of town. It had rained all day and Hna Gunter and I had only been to their house once before. We set out for their house, but it was already dark outside and we got lost. So there we were walking around in the mud (and when I say mud, I mean MUD. Mud that your foot sinks deeply into and mud that is EVERYWHERE). We had our umbrellas, but it was raining so hard, and it was so windy, that we ended up just taking our umbrellas down because we were soaked anyways. We couldn’t find the house, we were drenched and dirty, we didn’t know exactly where we were, and we were starting to get worried because we knew we were close to a dangerous part of town where a lot of robberies go on. Then right behind us we hear a "Hola Hermanas!" Hna Gunter and I both screeched and jumped back. Apparently the young man who we were trying to visit his family with had seen us walk right past his house, so he thought it would be funny to come up behind us and scare us. He caught us by such surprise that I turned around and started speaking in English "Oh my gosh! Mat­as don’t do that!" He thought that was hilarious. But luckily we ended the night eating some super delicious homemade pizza and his family called a taxi for us to go back home.

So, it has basically been raining constantly the past week. The river has risen a TON. Today we went on divisions because Hna Gunter had to go to Posadas with another Hna in the zone, so here I am in Virasoro. The plan was that Hna Gunter would come and pick me up and then we would go straight back to Santo Tomé tonight. But the river has risen a lot and flooded a lot of homes of people, so a ton of people are living in the local school. Apparently today the river flooded the church, and has reached our apartment as well. Luckily we live on the second floor, so hopefully the river won’t keep rising. But if it rains again then our apartment will flood for sure. So Hna Gunter and I have to stay in Virasoro for a few days at least with the Hermanas here because for one the roads are flooded and two we wouldn’t be able to get into our apartment anyway since the first floor stuff is submerged in water.

I’m out of time. I wish I could write everything that happened this week! But I think the scripture that describes this week the best is in 1 Peter 5: 6-8 "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." Satan knows our weaknesses, and he will attack us especially forcefully when he knows we are doing good and accomplishing righteousness. When I depend on God and turn to Him, God can turn my weaknesses into my strengths. God can strengthen me and help me stand steadfast and immovable. No matter how crazy life gets, Heavenly Father is only a prayer away. Christ can strengthen and support me.

I love you all!
Hermana Simmons

And I totally forgot about the fourth of july haha. everything here lately has just been "vamos argentina" for the world cup.

love you!
Okay i won’t be able to answer the first list of questions until next week when i will be able to be in Santo Tome again. But the second list i can answer:

1. Can you listen to music, and if so, what kind of music is allowed?
Yes, as long as it is "uplifting" and has no romantic overtones. Most people here listen to a ton of EFY or BYU Youth ambassadors or stuff like that. Basically mormon artists. Paul Cardell is super popular as well.

2. Do you have a cd player?
Every apartment has a little portable DVD player that can take a USB drive. So what people do is they load music onto their pen drive and then just play it from that. Hna Tapia had a TON of music, so I just copied some of her songs onto my USB drive before she left for Paraguay. I’ll just delete the songs from my USB when I get home from my mission, but most are available for free anyway on the church website.

3. Do you have access to April’s General Conference, either in magazine form or cd form?
Magazine form yes. In Spanish, but we can ask for one in English

4. Do you have a cell phone to use as a companionship?
Yep. We would probably not be able to survive without our cell phone because we use it to contact our zone leaders and to call investigators and members all the time

love you!

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