March 08, 2015

Ciudad del Este

Alright, I am officially working here in Ciudad del Este with Hermana Dance. It has been a pretty exciting first few days. CdE is right on the border of Argentina and Brazil, so the downtown center is HUGE (see web photos here). Also, apparently it is a more dangerous area, so on the weekends we are supposed to get home an hour early. At first I didn’t really think it was necessary, and then we got to my first Sunday night here and I was pretty happy to be going inside at 8:30 haha.

Our pension here is on the FOURTH FLOOR. We have to climb up so many stairs. So. many. stairs. Plus, all of the heat and humidity from the rooms below us rise up and stay in our pension. and the sun is right above us. So it gets a little hot in the apartment. Luckily we have an air conditioning unit in our bedroom that we turn on during studies and while we sleep. Just so you get an idea, we have the AC unit set to 70. But after walking around in the kitchen and bathroom, our bedroom feels like a freezer! It seriously feels so cold, and I sometimes want to put on a sweater during studies because my body is used to walking around in 95° weather all day, and then our apartment is (due to the trapped heat) probably around 100°.

The ward here is HUGE! There are about 150 to 200 people who come every Sunday. It caught me way off guard. I’ve been working in branches of about 10-30 people my whole mission. Even though Presidente Franco was a ward technically, only about 45-50 people showed up. It will be a weird adjustment.

We have been walking and contacting a lot of people these past few days. I just love Paraguayans!  Everyone is so friendly and lots of people here have shown interest in our message. The other night we went to visit a pair of sisters that Hna Dance and her old companion had been teaching for a while. We read from the Book of Mormon together, and then they invited us to some of their homemade empanadas! That was a good lesson, spiritually and temporally :) Someday I will make you all empanadas.

These past few months I have had a question and been really praying and fasting a lot to have it answered. I had been thinking about this question for such a long time, I was worried that I would never receive an answer. But then I remembered how Heavenly Father has answered my prayers in the past, and even though it might take some time, He ALWAYS listens and responds. And finally this last Sunday, after praying and asking and consulting with God, I decided to open my Book of Mormon and just continue reading where I had left off from my studies. It was exactly the answer to my question! I was so happy! I know God hears and answers prayers, and He will always provide us with what we need as we pray diligently and with sincerity!

Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
Matthew 7:7-8

Have a great week!

Hermana Simmons

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