September 22, 2014

I love being a missionary!

Hola Hola!
This past week has been, in a word, loca. (If I were forced to choose another word, though, I would choose "purete", which is basically Spanish for amazing)

We have been meeting with a woman named Julia for several weeks now. She is so ready and excited to be baptized, but has been trying to save up money to get married as well. Hna Garci­a and I have been praying and studying a lot to help her for a while now, and we felt that the time was right and Heavenly Father would work miracles if we just set the goal and did all the possible (and impossible) to help Julia and Bernardo (her boyfriend) get married.

We all fasted together, and the miracles keep coming! First off, Bernardo has not been able to work the past few days because of the pouring rain. Since our fast, the sky has been completely clear and sunny! Second, it normally costs 300 mil guarani to get married on a Saturday, but we talked with the judge and she said it would be totally fine to knock the price down to only 250 mil. Third, Bernardo at first did not want to spend the money to get married. He said that they already had two daughters and were living together and he did not see the point in making anything official. But we talked to him about Heavenly Father’s plan for eternal families, and now he is working just as hard as Julia to help make this wedding happen! Ah! This week has been amazing.
On a side note, I found out that I am allergic to a bug here. I can’t remember what it is called, but I think it is some kind of mosquito. Anyway, it bit me right on the ring finger of my right hand, and my finger got super red and started to throb. The next day, it had swollen a ton. So on Sunday while visiting a sister, we showed her my hand, hoping to receive some advice on how to make it improve quickly. Without even waiting she told me she had the cure. She grabbed a bottle from her medicine cabinet and began pouring a little bit of the liquid onto my hand. It helped a lot! When I asked her what was in the bottle, she told me it was alcohol and marijuana! So that was probably the closest I have ever gotten to drugs haha.
I can’t believe that I hit my six month mark this week! The time has flown by! But I really do enjoy being out here. I love this area and I love all these people! In Mosiah 8:18 I found a scripture that I liked. "Thus God has provided a means that man, through faith, might work mighty miracles; therefore he becometh a great benefit to his fellow beings" I can truly testify that when we trust in God and have righteous desires, we can see miracles happen in our lives. I know that I am exactly where my Heavenly Father wants me to be, and I am so grateful for Jesus Christ and that through faith in Him I can serve these Paraguayans, because they truly are amazing!
love you all! Have a wonderful week!

Hermana Simmons

Yeah, I’m starting to be extraordinarily grateful that I am going to be in the mission for two "winters" instead of two summers. The "winter" here is not winter at all. And I can’t even imagine the heat that is going to start arriving come December and January. And I think God understands that I absolutely hate feeling sweaty and hot, so that is why I had to wait to start my mission in March, so I would only have to make it through one South American Summer!

Thanks for your letter! I love you!!

Hna Simmons

And thank you for the information! haha At least now I know not to waste any money buying those chia seeds. My companion and I bought some last week just to see what they were like, but we really don’t like the taste and didn’t want to be eating them for nothing haha.
Honestly, I don’t think my skin would be this bad, but it’s the fact that we give "besitos" every time we meet with people. Instead of saying “hi" or shaking hands or just giving a hug, people go up and do the whole cheek to cheek salutation thing. I'm so accustomed to it now I am worried that when I get off the plane in a year to say hello to everyone I’ll start giving besitos instead of hugs!
Thanks for your letter! Love you!

Hna Simmons

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