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Monday, April 29, 2013

April 29th, 2013

Greetings from Peru! If you were all here I´d kiss you! ;)
Well, exciting news! We had our first baptism on Saturday! Exciting right?! Santiago was baptized and it was so great! We finally got his mom to let him on Friday night late and it was an exciting day. Elder Castillo baptized him and Elder Cook was one of the witnesses. Santiago was so happy and you could tell his mom was touched. He was confirmed in Sacrament meeting yesterday and it was just awesome. I love the church and the changes you can see in people as they try to align their lives with the teachings of the Savior.  I am ever grateful for the Priesthood and the blessings it brings.

We also have had a couple of lessons that went really well and the people seem quite receptive. Honestly I´m learning that at this point that a lot of missionary work is a lot of walking around..but we are searching for people and that´s what´s important.

Elder Bednar came and spoke to our mission on Thursday. He is a treat. Honestly just so fun and he has such a strong presence and spirit. It was funny because my companions were so nervous about him coming. I forget how blessed we are to so often hear from living prophets and apostles. To live so close to be able to attend General Conference...wow. So great.
We had interviews with President Turk on Tuesday. It was great, but kind of sad because they will be released in July so it was our last one. President Turk is so awesome. I don´t know him super well obviously, but he really has such an awesome attitude and spirit and Sister Turk is a bomb shell. She has so much energy it is hilarious.
My companions are awesome.  Hemana Maza will be leaving here soon. She´s from Lima and was called to Argentina but no VISA yet. What a blessing it has been for me though because she really has been such a help to me. She is patient and slows down her speaking so that I can understand a bit better. Hemana Diaz is a convert to the Gospel and really has a passion for it.  They´re both wonderful and I truly am blessed!
Love, Hermana Butterfield

Monday, April 22, 2013

April 22, 2013

Happy birthday, to Chrissie Millet, Angela Erwin, and Kara Smack! I hope you had and have wonderful days! You deserve it!

Welp! Another week! Learning the language is definitely a struggle. I can usually understand the majority of what is being said in lessons or when a gospel principle is being talked about, other than that I´m pretty lost.  No baptisms this week, which was rough because we had two scheduled.  The little girl, Sophia, her father decided he didn´t want her to be baptized. She is sad, we are sad, the whole thing is pretty rough. Santiago the 14 year old boy we´ve been teaching had verbal permission, but not written, but he passed his interview, so this week hopefully! His girlfriend who has also been taking the lessons has a baptismal date as well so we will continue to teach her and hopefully everything will work out.
The customs are definitely different here. haha I´ve never been kissed nor have I kissed so many people in my life. That´s how you greet women and children, a peck on the cheek. They´re very warm people and very sweet. It´s different as well because everyone has a gate in front of their door. We rarely knock on a door -- we ring a bell or knock on the gate and wait on the curb for them to come unlock it. It´s kind of fun...
Inline image 1We have been having some of the youth come teach with us which is really pretty cool. One of the young women, Ashley, has come to a few of our lessons and it´s just really a neat experience for them to be there.  We taught a women yesterday about the message of the Gospel and our expectations in teaching. She was really receptive and asked when we could come again (we were teaching her at her friend´s home). That was really exciting, until we found out she´s not in our area! So frustrating. Hopefully the Elder´s in her area will take good care of her. You can tell she truly has a desire to learn.
Elder Bednar is coming on Thursday! So cool, right? Strange that I´d have to fly all the way to Peru to have one of the 12 come speak to me, yeah? haha It´ll be really good and I´m definitely excited to hear the message he has prepared.
We will be moving at the beginning of the month. It´s definitely larger that our room now. I´m not sure that it´s nicer, but it´s larger (: I am grateful to have somewhere to live however, and often feel spoiled as to my circumstances.
Well, I love you so much! Thank you for your prayers and support. I recognize every day how truly blessed I am to have such love in my life. I pray for you daily and hope you are all well.

With all my love,
Hermana Bug

Monday, April 15, 2013

April 15, 2013
Hola familia!
Well, It´s been a crazy few days on my front to say the least. I received my travel plans unexpectedly on Tuesday night around 5:30 and had to be to the travel office at 7:30 the next morning, so that was fun. 
Lets just say I was blessed to not be charged for having extra weight on my flights from Lima to Trujillo. My flight from Lima to Trujillo was probably my favorite because I was able to play tic tac toe with the little boy next to me. He didn´t know English and I obviously don´t know Spanish, but that´s the cool thing about love, yeah? Everyone speaks it!
I met President and Hermana Turk on Thursday night when I arrived in Trujillo along with the office assistants. It´s on the mission blog http://terryandjanetturk.blogspot.com/ that updates everything happening in the mission. I have two native companions! Hermanas Diaz y Maza. Stress...but it´s ok. That just means I´ll learn it faster, yeah? They´re very sweet and patient and remind me I´ve only been here a few days. And who ever said Peruvians speak a bit slower and more clearly got that one wrong.
We had a zone meeting (I thing?) on Saturday and so I met more missionaries which was fun. Our zone leader is Elder Cook and he´s awesome. I think I will definitely be calling him more than our district leaders just based on the fact he speaks English and will actually know what I´m saying (: After our meeting (that I had no idea what was being said) we all went to lunch at Norkys. They´re everywhere. It´s chicken and fries basically.
We can´t eat strawberries, lettuce, pork or ceviche (thank heaven for the last one, but I will miss bacon (: ha ha ) The food really hasn´t been bad. It´s definitely different, but I don´t mind it. I´m beginning to wonder if I have a cast iron stomach because anytime someone finds out I´m from the states they ask, how is your stomach? Are you feeling alright? It makes me nervous to be honest, but I feel fine. It will just take some getting used to drink water from a bottle with a filter and using that same bottle of water to brush my teeth.
I really don´t know what´s going on most of the time, but I get the gist. We have two baptisms this weekend! I think... ha ha. Sofia is 9 and Santiago is 14. I really don´t know their stories, but it has been fun to help teach (or at least be present while my companions taught).
I was reading in Mosiah and I am just continually reminded of the importance of humility. The Lord truly can´t work through us if we aren´t humble. It´s when we are humble, have faith and are willing to act that He can then lead us in the way He wants for us.
One of my favorite things still to see is fathers with their daughters. The family seriously is so amazing. I love seeing the love these families have for one another. They are in the most humble circumstances I have ever seen, but they are so happy. I had a conversation with some friends in the MTC about where I want to live when I have a family, and I was thinking the other night that I really just want to be somewhere where I would feel safe having my children go outside to play.
I love you all! Keep praying!
Hermana Bug 

Friday, April 12, 2013

I made it to Trujillo! Both of my companions, yes I have two, are both natives so not much English for me...its a bit confusing, but it will be good! Elder Zarian (he's from Eagle) is the assistant to the President so that's kind of fun. I'm safe. My p-days are Monday so I will email you then.  Well, I love you and I will write more on Monday. Loves!
Hma. Bug

April 12, 2013 
Safe, yes. Overwhelmed, completely, but itll be good.
We got in at about 3:30 in the morning and were allowed to sleep in until 9...I woke up at 8 though.   
There's a lot going on, and I just have to be ready to fly to Trujillo in a few hours. Its beautiful here! Kind of scary, but beautiful. The people helping us are so kind and patient even though none of us knows what happening haha. ...Im in Peru...so crazy. Even when people don't know what you're saying they just smile and then ramble off in unknown words haha It'll be an adventure yeah.
We drove through part of Lima to get to the CCM and its just so crazy, and scary, and beautiful all in one. I'm excited. Trujillo here I come!  I love you so so so so so so much! Thank you for everything!
Love Bug

Friday, April 5, 2013

April 5, 2013
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Holy smokes! Only a few more days in the CCM -- and they're going to be amazing! We have Pday today (which means temple day!) and then General Conference! I am so excited for General Conference. We won't have the normal schedule on Saturday because of it so we won't have our normal classes which is a bit stressful since my Spanish is still not really existent, but I'm better than before so we'll stay optimistic 

Last Friday as I was waiting for Hma Bendixen while she was in an appointment there was the coolest old man who came up and just started chatting with me. He was pretty snazzy and just a delight. He started of asking if he could tell me a joke. It went something like this:

A little girl was in class one day and her teacher said that there was no way Jonah could have been swallowed by a whale. The young girl said that yes, yes he could have been -- it was a really great big huge whale. The teacher argued and the little girl replied that someday when she got to heaven she would ask him. The teacher asked the question, "What if he didn't go to heaven, what if he went down below?" The little girl replied, "well then, I guess you'll have to ask him." Oh my lanta what a treat.

He then told me a bit about his life. About how his father was from Sweden and had accepted the Gospel at the age of 19, was disowned by his family for his beliefs, moved to America and never looked back. He said he was so grateful everyday for his fathers choice, because he knows now he can be with his family forever. He talked about his life with his wife. He said that he worked day and night for his whole life so when he finally felt ready he retired, bought a truck and trailer and they went to California. The next day she was bitten by a mosquito, the next day she went into a coma for 5 months and for nine years he took care of her as she could do nothing for herself. He said he hired someone to do everything for them so he could devote all his time to her. He bathed her, fed her, took care of her, and he said he always tried to never speak a course word to her because he knew she could understand even though she didn't show it. What devotion. He told me that although it was a few months off now, that when I get home I need to find someone who would love me like that. That I shouldn't rush into anything (we're agreed on that) and that I should wait and find the right one, because if I don't love them then, it won't change, and it won't end well. He was a gem. I just want a younger version of him. Thanks! (:

So Easter Sunday was really great. The huge Sacrament meeting I explained was just so amazing. 100 Elders passing and over 3,000 missionaries taking the Sacrament at once. The Elders in our District were able to be some of the few able to break and bless. So wonderful -- they truly are just amazing. And I was so happy to sing in the choir. Music truly fills my heart with joy and singing really is a prayer that is even more beautiful than I could ever speak. I love it!

The speaker for Sacrament meeting was the Presiding Bishop, Bishop Gerald Causse. So cool, huh? He said something that I thought about quite a bit. He said that someday he would like to meet Jesus and be able to thank Him for all of the blessings He has given us and to be able to say he's tried his hardest. Wouldn't that be so wonderful? I just love that thought. He also quoted Les Miserables -- "Love is a celestial respiration of the air of paradise." Beautiful! There is no paradise without love -- so let's just keep on loving one another because then and only then can we feel what paradise truly will feel like. I love you all so much, and I miss my piece of heaven to be with you, but I just need to take some heaven to some other people for a bit.

THEN for Sunday night devotional, Sheri Dew spoke!  That talk was specifically to me. If no one else received anything I know I did. She talked about influence and how easily we ourselves are influenced and how we influence others. It made me ask myself how I allow myself to be influenced and how I influence others. I know I'm easily influenced and that's not always the best thing, but I really hope that I have been an influence for good in other people's lives. I know I've not always been the best, but I know that these months will set the tone for the rest of my life. They truly will prepare me to be who the Lord wants me to be and ultimately, in turn, who I want to be. It's the whole repentance and turning our will to the Father's. I'm excited to see who He wants me to become -- even though I'm catching glimpses. She spoke of 3 ways the adversary influences us: He confuses us about who the Savior is, who we are, and how we receive revelation. Scary huh? I can see how he influences me daily. However, the more we love Christ, the more we know Him. So love Christ and forget about the other guy, because he doesn't want anything good to come of us. God chose us to live NOW. That's some serious Divine confidence, so remember we are here now for a reason and we won't forget who we are because we are children of a loving God who wants nothing more than for us to be happy and return with Him.

So Sunday was great. Monday was weird because we had to switch classrooms. It shouldn't be that big of a deal, and truthfully it wasn't, but it's kind of funny how attached you get to a room in the matter of a month. 

Tuesday one of my weaknesses was just made completely and utterly evident. Hma Bendixen received her travel plans with included her visa to Peru! WAHOO! I really was so excited for her, but my jealousy made it hard to feel that true joy. That is something I need to get rid of. Jealousy is an ugly thing and it ruins happiness. So I'm working on that. She heads to Peru first thing Monday morning! I really am so happy for her. What a blessing she will be to so many. I was so blessed with a wonderful first companion who worked so well with me.

We were also able to usher for Devotional Tuesday evening and that was a fun opportunity. The devotional was great. He talked all about enduring to the end -- which let's be honest, the word endure sounds super not so fun, but sometimes life isn't fun. Life is hard word, so yeah it does take quite a bit of enduring, but we can also enjoy to the end most days if we smack a smile on our faces and deal with what comes our way with faith that the Lord knows what we can handle. 

So there's this thing called TRC. I think I've mentioned it before. It's hard, but I love it. My companion and I were able to teach the same sister about 3 times. Her name is Hma Rice and she is a gem. I absolutely love her and her sweet spirit. She really became an angel in my life as we were able to speak with her and as she shared with us her beautiful testimony each week. We saw her in the temple last Friday which was so fun! We "walked quickly" over to see her in the most reverent way possible (:

Yesterday was In Field orientation. It was cool. I'm excited, but kind of panicked about leaving the CCM. It seriously is an incubator and now we'll just see if I can breathe on my own once I leave. I pray often that I will love the people and that I can be a tool for good in the Lord's hands. That I can help bring true joy to those I serve. 

We had our last class with Hmo Clifford last night. And we said goodbye to our Branch Presidency. So sad, but I can't wait to see them all again. They have been such wonderful influences in my time here. They are all wonderful people.

Just so you know I WAS reassigned until my VISA can get here. Drum roll anyone? I know you want to know! I went to the travel office yesterday and they told me I was assigned to serve in ...Independence, Missouri!

Crazy, right? I hadn't even thought of there. And although I think it would have been great to serve the people of Independence, the Lord decided He like the original plan better. My VISA went through! So I will be heading to Peru, hopefully next week! We just have to wait for it to get here and them I am off for the shock of a lifetime (: I'm so excited!  Well, I love you all. I pray for you, and I hope all is well. I miss you like crazy. You are my rocks and I can't wait for eternity!
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Love,  Hermana Butterfield