called to serve

called to serve

Monday, September 26, 2016

A Week of Success

This week was such a wonderful week in Los Naranjos. I was feeling a little worried at the beginning of the week if we were going to have a baptism or no. We found a house for Melissa on Sunday but I was worried that the move, the custody trials for her son and her baptism in Saturday would be way too much. But when we talked with her Tuesday night about changing her baptismal date she said she was already thinking that she didn't want to wait another week. On Monday and on Thursday, she had court trials for custody of her son and on Viernes, we spent almost the whole day helping her move and on Saturday she was baptized! She was so happy. She has carried a weight on her shoulders for her bad decisions for a few years and yesterday said that she finally feels free and at peace. I am excited to see what she will be able to do in the branch. She is so willing to help already and fits in with the members well. 

I am very grateful for the people that the Lord has led us to in this area. We have several investigators that I think are going to progress and have one investigator that I know is going to be baptized. I have mentioned several times about Jose Roberto. This last week, he committed to go to church, but when the members got to his house on Sunday he wasn't at home. When we visited him on Tuesday, he said he had an emergency meeting he had to go to. We felt a little disanimated but he said he would be there the next Sunday. We decided that if he didn't come this Sunday we were going to have to leave him. Yesterday, we passed by in the morning and he was already getting ready, but said he wanted to come on his own. He got to the church just a few minutes before the meeting and stayed for all three classes. We took him for a tour of the building and introduced him to many members he didn't know.As we asked the members about what he had said to them, the president of the elders quorum told us that Jose Roberto said he IS going to be baptized, but that he wants to put his life in order first. He loves the Book of Mormon and reads alot every day. He understands the doctrine and knows that the church is true, but has a lot of challenges to overcome. He has almost stopped drinking coffee and struggles a little more to quit the tobacco but is willing and trying to do so. He also has to get married before he can be baptized. He said he is more than willing to do so and realizes the importance of it. He just has to convince his wife. She doesn't want to sit with us alot for the lessons, but for right now is supporting him in his decisions, so with lots of prayer, I think she will accept the invitation. He has all of the lessons and is progressing rapidly. I am hoping this week that we can put a baptismal date with him. 
Changes are this next week so I am a little nervous. I should know before I write you all in the morning on Monday. Dad said he wants me to go to Santa Ana and I think he might be right. I haven't ever been in a city in my mission...or lived in one in my whole maybe God will give me the opportunity to try it out ;) haha I feel like I will go there or to Metapan (the hottest area in the mission)...but I guess we will see what President Spjut and the Lord have in mind for me :) I think I am ready for wherever He takes me. I am going to be sad to leave all of my converts and a few of the members, but I am excited to find the other people who are waiting for me. I feel something big in my heart that the Lord needs me somewhere specific. Its a good feeling. :) 

I hope everything goes well in school and at work this week! Also, thanks for the pics of the temple...keep sending more! :) I was so excited to hear about Shelby's article in the newspaper and that Patriarch Craner is a new sealer....I think I just made my decision where I will be many many many years down the road. ;)   And thanks for your love and prayers!  I love you all so so so much and miss you more every day! 

Hermana Stoor

​MELISSA was baptized on Saturday! She is so so so wonderful! ❤

​With a few members and an investigator that came to the baptism: Carlos Viana, Cristova(inv.), Israel Aguilar, Melissa, Adela Aguilar, Presidente Walter and Nelson

​Just a few more members....Judy and Darlin...recient converts to the church as well :)❤

​Ashley :) ( the daughter of our branch president )  One of the cutest little girls in our area...she became my best friend this week. ......Also...check out my cool moose shirt I found this week!

​I'm not going to know how to eat when I go back to the states....we only eat with our hands here...but the food is soooo good!

Monday, September 19, 2016

Hey family! Sounds like everything is good at home and busy as ever. I cant wait to hear everything about the temple open house and dedication and celebration. It makes me want to be there just a little....but just a little :) Dad, I hope you had a great birthday! 50 now right? :) I hope my brother and sisters take you out to a nice dinner like I would have ;) hahaha Love you Dad!
This week was a good week, full of trials as always, but things get a little better every day as well. I have learned how to pass through trials and stay a little more at peace if nothing else ;) We have transfers in two i am looking forward to that :) 6 months in one area is a little too long. My companion and I had some problems on Tuesday, but the rest of the week we have been fine. She  gets  mad ALOT and this week she went a little overboard than the normal. Its a good thing I have learned so much patience on my mission....i wouldn't have handled her this week at the beginning of my mission. It got so bad this week...just because i asked her how she was when she was mad...that she didnt even want to leave the house. She sat down and started reading and wouldn't even look at me or talk to i had to call my leaders...and they called president and it was a mess, but she refused to even talk to our leaders on the phone. The branch president passed by and she refused to even look at him. Our mission leader passed by with him and refused to talk to him either. Shes a really good companion and I love her alot. She's one of my best friends. But she still has alot to learn in the mission. I'm learning a little how my trainer felt with me....because I was a disaster at the beginning....and I'm even more grateful for the patience she had with me. It's what happens when your starting the mission I guess....lots of stress. But everything is good now. The hermana leaders came and talked with her the next day and we were able to talk a little and now everythings good. President Spjut also sent me this letter:

Hermana Stoor,

I understand that you had some difficulties with your companionship this week, but that the sister training leaders were able to help the two of you work things out. I hope that is the case and that you are back working together with the Spirit. And I'm sure that in the process you learned some things that will be of value in the future. We grow as we overcome challenges. Thanks for all you do.

Pdte. Spjut

Just another trial of my patience :) And like president said....its only going to help me for my future :) I think everythings going to be good now....I'm just not going to ask her how she is doing again. hahaha

We had a good rest of the was a pretty normal week. We worked hard, saw miracles, found new people, laughed, cried, played some futbol. A little bit of everything. The biggest miracle we received was that we finally have a house for Melissa to move into so she can be baptized this weekend!!!!!! It is a real miracle. Yesterday, we were talking with our mission leader after church and he said that he was willing to give up his house for a month or two as we look for another house! He's going to go live with his uncle for the time being and we are going to move Melissa in the morning! Although I don't think we can help....because her house is technically outside of the mission. ;) It is a huge sacrifice for Nelson, but a huge miracle for us. week I will send you all the pics of her baptism. We need lots of prayers that everything goes well. We have been working, praying and fasting so hard for this and the time has finally come!

Well, my time is up for this week, but just know that I love you all and that although maybe all my letters could make you think I am not happy....I really am. I love the mission! And I am so grateful for all it is teaching me. :) Have a good week and don't have too much fun without me ;)

Les quiero,
Hermana Stoor

Monday, September 12, 2016

This week was a wonderful wonderful week in Los Naranjos. I think it might just be the best week I have had here in this area. We worked super super hard and had lots of fun too.  Things are going well with most of our investigators. We had a few downfalls this week, but we also were able to make alot of miracles happen. The biggest miracle from our week was that we found the family that I think is the family I have been looking for here. After one of our lessons, we asked for a reference of someone who had just  had a  baby or that had just moved in or someone that could use some service right now and our investigator told us about a family of 6 whose mom had left them. She told us that the father lives in a small house across the road with his 5 children. So, after leaving the house we went directly to find them. The oldest daughter answered the door and the whole family left to meet us. We had a very spiritual lesson with them and they were all so happy to hear our message. When we left, Hermana Romero and I both left with big smiles on our faces. This family is exactly who we have been looking for. I believe that with alot of prayer, we can get them to church this week and that this family is going to progress well together. 

This week we saw alot of progression with Melissa Rodriguez and Jose Roberto. Melissa has a baptismal date right now for October 1 but this week said that she wants to leave the house of the father of her child the fastest that she can. We are now searching for a house for her in our area and I think that if we can find one this week, we can get her moved and can move her date for the 24th of September.  She is alot more determined to reach her goal after this week. It was also a good week with Jose Roberto as well. His biggest problem has been the Sabbath day and this week, he promised to be at church this next week. He is finally starting realize the importance of what we are teaching and I know that as soon as he comes to church, it will be alot easier for him to decide when he wants to be baptized. He always talks with us about having a goal to be baptized before we even invite him and I think that when he attends church and watches during the sacrament it will make all the difference. 

We also had some fun this week. We had exchanges with the hermana leaders and have just had fun working hard this week. Here is a little funny, scary story from our week:
​So, it wasn't quite like this, but something similar. We went to the farthest area of our area on Wednesday and when we were headed back, the bus was full of people...but when i say full I am not talking about school bus full. I am talking about El Salvador full, adults sitting on laps of other adults that they don't know full. We were hanging out of the door of the bus, everything normal, until a woman behind me said that she wanted to get off. So we hit the side of the bus so the bus driver stopped and he must of thought it was me that wanted to get off so when my feet hit the ground, he took off. But I was going to be ALONE. In El Salvador, in the middle of nowwhere, on the side of the road by a coffee field, completely ALONE. This all happened in a matter of about 5 seconds but....the first thing that came to my mind was my companion...alone on the bus with a whole bunch of men leaving the coffee I starting running after the bus and was about to catch on to a bar and pull myself up...with whatever strength I found to the window and was hanging off the side of the bus only holding onto the window for a good thirty seconds. Everyone inside were pounding on the side of the bus, but the bus driver just didn't stop. There was a member on the bus as well with us and starting screaming to stop the bus. Everyone thought the wheel was going to run me over....and I think it was just God that saved me. After I fell from the bus and climbed up to my companion I just gave her the biggest hug that I could and told her that I loved her and that I would never leave her alone. Everyone was half way crying, half way laughing for the 20 minutes that we had left on the bus. It was quite the rush. I think we will avoid being in buses that are so full from now on. 

Anyways, glad to hear everything is good at home. Sounds like your all busy as always. I am doing good here. Don't think i need anything Dad. I'm pretty content. Haven't heard anything about the changing of the emails but I will let you know if there is something that happens. No more earthquakes..just tropical storms and lots of cold. I guess Hermana Spjut is doing better and we are healthy and happy as well. Happy to hear about the temple and see all the pictures...I hope you will all take me there my first day back. I cant wait to hear about when Mara goes through the temple. Wish I could be there, but I am finding more and more people here that I think need me here a little more time. And I wouldn't rather be in any other place than the mission. I hope all is well at work and at school for all of you. Be safe and have a great week! Don't forget how much I love you all. 

Hermana Stoor

​Took this picture in Auachapan.  I love when I get to go back to this town. Its my favorite place in all of the mission.

​Some fun that we had in Juayua this last week. This snake weighs 150 pounds and is 6 meters long. I didn't want to do it...but the elders gave me comfort that it doesn't kills people by suffocating huh? 

​Snake exhibit in Juayua :)

​The thumbs up thing is a thing in the mission. 

​Tropical Storms are cool. And really really really cold. 

​And the best part of El Salvador in this photo.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Hey family! I forgot to mention in my last letter, but things have been a little.....shaky here our area. We have had 2 big earthquakes in the last couple of weeks. They haven't done too much damage in our area....a few mountains that are falling....but we are good. haha I was bent over brushing my teeth when we felt the first one and just about fell in the was pretty hilarious. haha But don't worry....if the volcano explodes...its in our i feel like I probably wont feel a thing...we´ll be gone before we know what hit us. Lies. I think we are good 😀  Mom said you saw something in facebook about Hermana Spjut. And yes, life is hitting her pretty hard. Two weeks ago she fell down some stairs and broke her leg. She came this last week and looked pretty good...but is struggling with her crutches. And then i think on Thursday she had an appendicitis. She had surgery and has been in the hospital for four days, but I guess is at home now. I feel so bad for her. Thanks to God, Elder and Hermana Jensen came this change....they are our first missionary couple! They are so cute!!!!! We got to meet them last week when President Spjut passed in his car through our area and again for interviews. They are from Utah and know where Grays Lake is....I was so so so so so so so happy! They are the greatest! I think we are going to be good friends 😉

What else did you ask me......To answer a few....I am getting skinnier. But it is just for exercise and alot of fasting. We are doing a project of 40 days of fasting in our ward to help with the missionary work....and I will just say...we have had to do about a fourth of them for how small our ward is. hahaha I don't think its for parasites....but who knows 😉 I still have pain in my stomach alot of the time....but they never have figured anything im just going to wait another 8 months. But I really am okay Mom.

The work in our area was hard as always but through lots of prayer, it gets better every day. We had 41 people in church this week...3 of which were investigators so I am feeling pretty good about that. There are always problems in the branch...but we have just decided to ignore them and keep working....its better to just leave than fight. Im just happy to have investigators and to be a missionary here in general. I have basically changed my whole self here in these 5 months in Los more month and alot more to learn and change....and although its hard....I will always love this area for what its done for me. 

Melissa has passed through some difficulties preparing for her baptism. She has a baby and lives with the dad of her baby. She wants to separate from him, but is having problems  leaving the house because she doesnt have the money to do it. But we fasted with her this week and are praying all day for her. Keep her in your prayers and I know the Lord will prepare her way. 

Jose Roberto is one of my favorite people here. haha He is a golden investigator you could say....with alot of problems. He reads more in The Book of Mormon than I think I do every week and absolutely loves it! He wants to learn everything he can about the church and has even said a few times that maybe he would like to be a part of it...haha but doesnt want to accept a baptismal date still. He has a lot of trials to overcome before his baptism....word of wisdom, the law of chastity and the sabbath day. But he is converting himself to the gospel and with a real conversion...these things become easier to fix 😉

I am so excited to hear everything about the temple and everything that you are going to be doing over the next few weeks. Cant wait to talk with Mara as well about her experience. I know your going to love it sis! There isnt a better day in all of your life. I am sad i am not there...but the Lord has other things for me to do. And I love my work here 😀 I love this gospel so much. I know it is true with all of my heart. I love the Lord with all of my heart and I know He lives! And I know this is his true church and I wouldnt rather do anything else than represent Him here in this beautiful country. Love you all with all of my heart and wish the best for you this week!

Hermana Stoor

​Here is my new district...Hermana Romero...yo....Elder Vasquez and Elder Jensen (brand new from the United States) woohoo! It has been fun!

​Frying platanos for lunch...who knew I would grow to love fried bananas so much? 😀

​This is Jose Roberto and his wife....I love this family so much! Lots of prayers for him! 

I'm basically Latina....there is nothing better than this breakfast.

​Here's where we found our investigator the other day...digging...with a shovel and septic tank....he said it is 9 meters to the bottom. 

​And playing soccer....he is just so cute and little...but so much better and guarding the goal than me. hahaha