Monday, June 15, 2015

Week 14 - Rio Tercero - June 15, 2015


You have no idea what a great day it was yesterday.  

In this week we have had Zone reunions and Interviews with the President and his assistents (One of which is my long distint cousins!!! Elder Caten.  His 3rd abuelo is Edwin Dilworth Woolley... it was super funny in the interview becuase he randomly just says, Hermana Woolley.. I think we are family.  I have a grandpa named Edwin Dilwayne Woolley.  I said Dilworth???? haha we laughed and looked it up.  Sure enough we are family! His line follows the daughter who married a Rust.  He said that in his family history it tells the story that out of the 240 decendents of his Rust Woolley grandmother- 220 are completely active and worthy members of the church.  It was even weirder becuase when I asked where he lives, he lives about 20 minuets outside of nashville.  we were dying as I told him that my parents were all in nashville that very week.  Small world.)

Sorry I dont have much time... this week I was writing a lot of my friends.  Forgive me?  

Bueno. Back to A*!  We invited him to church about 7 times in the week.  Saturday night we told him to not go to the bar, but to go to sleep so that he could go to church.  The next 13 hours, I said more prayers than ever.  Each one specifically asking for a miracle in A*.  

The next morning as I was leading the opening song in Gospel principals, he walked in.  We were so stunned adn excited that we had the nervous giggles.  He came for the last two hours, because the member that was going to accompany him slept in, but he was ready at 9.  Frustrating... but hey-- HE CAME!  We talked about agency and choosing to follow and accept the lord in our lives.  He kept looking at us and saying, "I´m content here!"

Then we went to sacrament meeting and he began to cry as we sang the sacrament hymn!!!!!  He sat there and read un monton de himnos during the whole meeting.  I also loved it because it woke up the members to have an investigator at church.  He was greeted by the whole ward!!!!  Each one asked how he felt, and the speakers gave their testimonies of the simple truths of the gospel and the restoration.  

At one point in the meeting, as I sat behind the always... I saw that he was looking up at the ceiling.  I thought, "oh great, he is thinking `how much longer^`, but no, his sight was fixed in something.  At the end of the meeting, while he was thanking a speaker, he told her that he has never felt so much peace and tranquilidad in his life.  He didn´t feel like leaving when the meetings ended.  The sister invited him to read the Book of MOrmon, and he accepted.  Also turns out that he knows the Elders quorum President.  MIRACLE!!!!  

Although his friend (Recent Convert) introduced us to A*, he is not acted the way he should.  So thank goodness now he knows other members and that he has so much more potential to progress. 

Sorry I am writing so fast!!!

Later we ate lunch with him and his family.

As we were planning later in the day, the zone leaders called us and congratulated us!  They said that as they had their interviews with the assistentes, The elders commented that Rio III has not had a baptizm in over 6 months, but that they feel and know that Hna Solar and I will have the next baptism.  We will be the companionship to change the area for the better.  They were so exstatic and truly helped us.

I guess you could say we are more than excited too.

A* has a lot of changes to make, but we feel that he can prepare and be baptized the 27 of June.  Pray and fast for him!!!

In the week we also painted a house for service!!!!

All in all, we are happy and we are well.

Love you all.

Con amor, 
Hurrah for Israel
Hermana Woolley

Monday, June 8, 2015

Week 13 - Rio Tercero - June 8, 2015

Hola fam,


hmm... what to say in this week!  All the weeks are beginning to smoosh together, and soon enough I will be there at home.  Too crazy.  You trunky fools.  


Bueno, quick investigator updates.


NO ONE WENT TO CHURCH!!! we were super sad, but at the same time, it was an interesting week at church.  I now understand why sometimes missionaries have fear to take investigators to the chapel..... y bueno.


Raul is praying looking for his answer still.  We are learning patience in the process.  


A*l now wants to try again with the whole religion thing.  For a while we dropped himi because he was not progressing.  Then last night we passed by him in the street.  He was in his car and so he pulled over and talked with us on the curb.  He mentioned something about how beautiful the stars were.  We asked what he thought of when he saw the stars.  He told us he thought of his late father. Bingo.  We testified of the importance of the message that we have and all the answers that we have to give.  He is anxious to start a family, looking for happiness, and comfort after the death of his father.  That is exactly why we are here as missionaries.  We explained our purpose- a little better this time.  He looked off in the distance for a while and then said, "when can you pass by? we should give this another try becuase I believe you two." WOO HOO!  


Also this week we taught some spirit guided lessons.  Tears were shed while explaining the simple basics of forgiveness and the opportunidad to start new.  There is nothign better than seeing the people you are teaching begin to understand and the light hits their eyes just perfect.  Then they say "thanks... you came in the perfect moment"    I love being a missionary.


We watched The Testaments and 17 Miracles this week.  They are good reminders of the truth we have been called to share.  After crying a good deal while watching the movies, I wanted to read more about my anscestors and their experiences with the pioneers.  


My favorite story, among many (also I like the danish that that sent his children to cross the plains while he saved up some more before leaving.) I found while qickly flipping pages was from Hiram Spencer from New England.   When he finally did make the journey to Utah, their company left late, and joined in with the Martin Handcart company at one point to help them and share their goods (if I didn´t mix up the stories I read).  He passed away just outside of Martins cove at the point of sweetwater.  His last words were, "Live and die with this work!"


Not only did I feel the spirit in knowing of the sacrifices of my family so that I could have this great blessing of the gospel in my life right now, and be sharing it with thousands of others, But I remembered when I was there in his sacred place of death.  


Are we constantly living for this work?  Are we ready to die when the time comes? Are we truly repentant?  Are we giving every sacrifice to the Lord?  

"Arrepentirse no siempre significa que hay que hacer grandes cambios.  Con frecuencia, no requiere más que una mayor dedicación para vivir de acuerdo con la voluntad de Dios.  El verdadero arrepentimiento no siempre sucede con rapidez; sea paciente con usted mismo mientras se esfuerza por hacer lo correcto y enmendar sus errores.  Al arrepentirse, experimentará  un cambio en su corazón; ya no tendrá deseos de pecar; llegará a saber que es un hijo de Dios y que no es necesario que siga cometiendo los mismos errores una y otra vez.  Su deseo de seguir a Dios será cada vez más fuerte y profundo. Todos cometemos errores.  A veces nos hacemos daño a nosotros mismos y herimos gravemente a otras personas sin poder reparar solos el daño causado;  cometemos daños que no podemos arreglar por nosotros mismos; entonces nos sobreviene la culpa, la humillación y el padecimiento, los cuales no podemos sanar por nosotros mismos.  El poder sanador de la Expiación puede remediar aquello que nosotros no podemos solucionar."

“Repentence does not always mean making great changes.  With frequence, it does not require more than a higher dedication to live according to the will of God.  True repentence does not always come quickly; be patient with yourself while you become stronger to do what is right and mend your errors.  Upon repenting, you will experience a change of heart; you will no longer have desire to sin; you will come to know you are a child of God and that it is no longer necessary to continue making the same mistakes over and over.   Your desire to follow God will make you stronger and will become more profound each time.    We all commit errors. At times we hurt ourselves and we gravely hurt other people and we alone cannot repair the harm we have done; we cause harm the we cannot fix ourselves; so we are over come with guilt, humiliation, and suffering which we cannot heal ourselves.  The healing power of the Atonement can fix what we cannot solve.”


Turn to the Savior.  He is the source of all happiness.  


Hope I didn´t bore you with my sermon this week.  They have just been thoughts on my mind.  


In this week I got a new bici, we visited the river and had a flashback fotoshoot (with sara hiatt in the trees--our personal sacred grove), and visited the catholic church.  All in all, a good week with some difficulties no más.  like normal.


“The Standard of Truth has been erected; no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done.”


1.     Shall the youth of Zion falter

In defending truth and right?

While the enemy assaileth,

Shall we shrink or shun the fight? No!

2.     (Chorus)

True to the faith that our parents have cherished,

True to the truth for which martyrs have perished,

To God's command,

Soul, heart, and hand,

Faithful and true we will ever stand.

3.     2. While we know the pow'rs of darkness

Seek to thwart the work of God,

Shall the children of the promise

Cease to grasp the iron rod? No!

4.     3. We will work out our salvation;

We will cleave unto the truth;

We will watch and pray and labor

With the fervent zeal of youth. Yes!


6.     4. We will strive to be found worthy

7.     Of the kingdom of our Lord,

With the faithful ones redeemed

Who have loved and kept his word. Yes!

Keep going strong and Live and die with this work.  Hurrah for Israel.


Con amor,

Hermana Woolley


Another quick cool story.  After a tough day, and not finding any new investogators in the week, we were fasting.  After snapping a few pics in the trees, we decided to start contacting.  We knelt down right there in the middle of the trees to offer a prayer to our maker asking for people to teach.  


The first two doors we knocked were super receptive, and asked us to return on wednesday.


God lives, and he is aware of us.  Get on your knees and speak with him.




I hope this email makes sense... I feel super scatterbrained and jumping all over the place.  Anyways. Love you fools, enjoy your week of travels. 


Mom, on my card that certifies me as a true missionary, it says that I will be a missionary until nov 17, so I am assuming that is when I willbe released, and it makes sense with the math. But I am not 300% positive. who knows, I might just extend to have another argentine christmas..........


 ....joke. You can breathe again.  haha.  Its an option. We shall see.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Week 12 - Rio Tercero - June 1, 2015

WHAT A WEEK!  Just when you think that things couldnt get any worse.... as I was emailing last week, someone stole my bike.  So now that leaves us without bikes, and without a cell phone.  It makes missionary work nearly impossible, and super frustrating.  But... There are always things to do.  

For starters.  I accomplished a dream this week that I never thought I would accomplish.  I CAN NOW SOLVE A RUBIX CUBE!!!!!! My fastest time is in 4:47 so take that.  Ha .  A member taught me in this week, and now Im a champ.  I am super happy.  Sometimes in the morning when I dont feel like excercising, I do a few brain excercises to wake me up with my rubix cube. hahaha.  Im gonna get fat :)

Also, I need to update you on Raul.  He is our neighbor who has an infection that is slowly killing him.  He was unable to move for 9 months, but now is walking.  Anyways,  This week we visited him and taught him about the Restoration and Jose Smith.  The spirit was so strong.  It was at the end of an awful day.  We got back to our apartment builing and decided to give his door a chance.  He let us in and earlier that day, I had taught the training in our District meeting.  We had focused on asking inspired questions  and following the spirit.  So, as we were passing through the doctrinal points of Lesson 1, I was specifically praying to konw when to ask an inspired uestion, and what to ask.  

It came quite quickly.  It was a simple question, but it made all the difference.  "Raul, have you ever truly been happy, simply happy?"
He looked at us and said, "sisters, I dont think I have ever been happy.  Do you think that you are happy here on this earth? What is your moment of true happiness?"

In that moment, the spirit filled the room as me and my companion shared moments of when we felt complete happiness.  Both of us happened to think and share the same experience-- entering into the temple.  We connected this love and pure amor (love) to the knowledge of the restoration.  Thanks to Jose Smith, we are able to experience that joy whenever we want.  We are happy and we have great reason to rejoice.  

At the end of the lesson he told us that for about a month now, he has been feeling anxious in his life, becuase he believes that a change is coming.  After teaching about Jose Smith and inviting him to be baptized he said, "This is the change I have been waiting for!"  He accepted to be baptized and we are now working on helping him rocognize his answer that this is the true church.  He is praying a lot, and we are working on the Book of Mormon.  Unfortunately, he did not go to church yesterday because he had to travel to his gmas house, but will go the following week.  

We are excited for him, and ask your prayers and fasts for him.  In the way that he responds, my comp an I believe that he already knows that it is true.  He just needs a little bit more faith to act on these feelings.  

At the end of each lesson he says, "I dont even know what time it is, and I dont even care.  I just know that I feel good inside."
 Pray for him.

This week I also ate some "yummy" argentine tradition.  For teh 25th de Mayo I ate "LOCRO".  yuck.  I felt so yucky inside.  It is a porridge with tons of chunks of meat.  But the thing is, you dont want to know what kind of meat you are eating.  Cow stomach.  Pig lining.  intestines.  And hairs everywhere.  It is the delicacy here.  Then they put a gross spicy sauce on top that just leaves you with ganas de vomitar (desires to throw up).  I had to eat 2 plates full because my companion didnt eat after 2 bites, so I had to make the member feel good about her "stew!"  We left feeling so sick.  look it up.  

I prefer French fries. One night this week, after another hard day, Hna Solar and I went and we just bought some french fries.  We sat down at a table, and ordered 2 portions of fries with fry sauce.  We sat there and ate happily whlie reading the pamphlet for the restoration.  We laugherd pretty hard as we realized how stupid we must have looked. 

 But nothing beats the looks we got when we rode the two of us on one bike!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  after my bike was stolen, a member lent us his bike, but after three blocks, the tire popped.  So we chained it to a tree, and kept going on with the one bike that we do have.   I sat on the bars above the back wheel with my long legs lifted up, and my short petite companion power housed it up hills, and through dirt roads peddaling her guts out.  We just laughed the whole time, so that brought the attention to us as well.  It was fun.  

Today for pday we cleaned every inch of the apartment.  No joke.  I felt like a little child cleaning base boards and leaving everything sparkling clean.   But now we have a clean apartment to have Rubix cube competicions.  :)

We also are teaching the Escobar Family.  They are super cute and even invited us over for an asado.  That means they love us.  They are super catholic, but they´ve started the Book of Mormon so things are looking good.

That is the weekly update.  Hope you have a great week.  I haven´t read your letters to me yet, so hope there is nothing too urgent or exciting.

Love you all! HAGS...jajajajajajajajajajajajajajajajajaja

con amor,
Hermana Woolley

Hurrah for Isreal!

Hi President!
Well, this week reminded me of my time in Carlos Paz.  It was a difficult week.  Someone stole our bike and it complicated everything.   We are still without a cell phone, so it is complicated.  Nevertheless, our investigator accepted to be baptized!!!  Raul said that he feels a large change is coming in his live, and just then we came to his door.   He said tha the believes that this change is what he has been waiting for and when we taught him the Restoration, we all cried.  The spirit guided us to ask inspired questions, and now Raul hopes to find the happiness that he has never felt in his life.   We have plans to visit with the Bishop in order to get him a blessing of health and to give him strength and support.
My companion still is “flexible” with the rules, but I am trying to show her by example in every moment and correct with love.  We feel bad for all that we could do better, but this is the time to lear more about the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
I am goo and have goals to give all to the Lord.  “Your loyalty is first to the Lord, then to your mission president, then to your companion."  I am focused and improving my ability to plan effectively and make appropriate goals – with faith.
Thanks for everything!
Sister Woolley

Hola Presidente!

Bueno, esta semana me recordó de mi tiempo en Carlos Paz.  Fue una semana difícil.  Nos robaron nuestra bici, y se complicó todo.  Todavía estamos sin celular, entonces es complicado.  No obstante, nuestro investigador aceptó ser bautizado!!!!  Raul dice que se siente que un cambio muy grande viene en su vida, y justo nos caímos en su puerta.  Dijo que cree que esta es el cambio el estaba esperando, y cuando enseñamos La Restuaracion, todos nosotros lloramos.  El espíritu nos guió en hacer preguntas inspiradas, y ahora Raul espera encontrar la felicidad que nunca tuvo en su vida.  Tenemos planes para visitar con el Obispo para dar una bendición de salud, y ser un hermanamiento y apoyo.  

Mi compañera todavía es muy "flexible" con las reglas, pero voy a tratar mostrar el ejemplo en cada momento y corregir con amor.  Nos sentimos mal por todo de que nos falta, pero, ésta es un momento para aprender más de la expiación de Jesucristo.

Estoy bien y tengo metas para dar todo al Señor.  "Your loyalty is first to the Lord, then to your mission president, then to your companion."  Estoy enfocando y mejorando mi habilidad de planear eficazmente y poner metas apropiadas--y con fe.  

Gracias por todo.

con amor,
Hermana Woolley

One Year Mark - Week 11 - Rio Tercero - May 25, 2015

Here is a video link from the dedication  (this has a lot of people i know in it)

What a year.  I can´t believe it has come so far.  I have experienced so much and prayed even more.  (super quick update---Ive got to go teach a lesson)

I guess you could call me a missionary.  This week, for pday, every thing was closed for a similar Memorial Day thing.  so we were stuck inside our pension.  And as my companion slept the day away... What did I find myself doing? reading the scriptures. hahahahahha.  When she woke up, I was so excited to tell her about the story I was reading in Helaman.  I read the entire book of Helaman yesterday because I literally could not put the book down.  Even though I knew what was going to happen, I was reading with such enthusiasm and amazement that I could not even dream about taking a siesta (nap).  I love that sacred book and I will always testify of its power.  If you haven´t read the entire book, now is the time to give it a try.  I promise that you will learn so much and feel closer to God than you ever have. If you are struggling with work- read the book.  if you want more friends- read the book.  If you need strength- read the book.  It is the answer to every difficulty in our lives because it points us to our savior.  Are you reading as a family?????????

JAJA this week I was teaching a FHE to the Colazo family and randomly they started singing Tra lalalallala lalala THE RUSSIAN SINGING AND SMILING!!! I basically started crying as it reminded me of you fools. I joined in singing with them, and turned bright red once I realized what I had done.  haha.  I dont know what came over me... it wasnt 11 o clock at night... so who knows ;)

The ward is struggling, but this week we gave some awesome talks to jolt their spiritual cords and unite us together.  Keep praying for us. I loved you letters this week.  Thanks for thinking of me :)  Im always thinking of you!  Finish the school year strong Love you!

Hermana Woolley

Hi President,
Thanks for the letter this week.  We couldn't write yesterday because of the holiday.   Everything was closed.
Nevertheless, this past week was my one year mark in the mission.  I can't believe it.  It gave me the opportunity to reflect on who I am as a missionary, how I have changed and what I have accomplished.  In the last year, I  have learned a new language, I have participated in the Cordoba temple dedication, I have made new friends which will last throughout my life, I have strengthened my relationship with the Godhead more than I have ever done before.  I have seen a new part of the world and its people, I have had bed bugs in my mattress, I have taught the gospel to many people, who were converted, baptized and made covenants with God.  It is a unique time and very treasured.
It has been difficult but it is worth the pain.
this week we made goals to help the ward.   It is not very united, with little progress.  We are now looking for more people to teach and dropping many who have not shown interest nor progress.  And, we have found 2 families.  The mission is a test of our faith.  I have been tested and have learned a lot.   I love the mission.  Thank you for sharing that great calling and experience with me and others.
My companion is struggling with the missionary lifestyle and the schedule is burdensome for her.   At times I feel bad and don't know how to help her do it so that we cna have more unity and success.  Do you have any suggestions?  I don't like to "reprimand/correct" but it is very importatn that we can have things right.
Thank you President,
Until Monday,
Sister Woolley

Hola Presidente,

Gracias por su carta esta semana.  No pudimos escribir ayer por causa del feriado.  Todo estaba cerrado. 

No obstante, esta semana pasada cumplí un año en la misión.  No lo puedo creer.  Me dio la oportunidad en reflexionar en quien soy como misionera, como he cambiado y lo que he  logrado.  En el ultimo año, he aprendido un idioma nuevo, he asistido y participado en la dedicación del templo de Córdoba, he hecho nuevos amistades, los cuales que van a durar toda la vida, he fortalecido mi relación con la trinidad como nunca había hecho antes.  He conocido un nuevo área del mundo y su gente, he vivido con chinches en mi colchón, y he enseñado el evangelio a muchas personas, las cuales se convirtieron, se bautizaron, y hicieron convenios con Dios.  Es un tiempo único y muy atesorado.    

Ha sido difícil, pero vale toda la pena.  

Esta semana, pusimos metas para ayudar al barrio.  Es muy desunido, sin mucho progreso.  Ahora estamos buscando a más personas para enseñar, y dejando a muchas quien no han mostrado interés ni progreso.  Y, hemos encontrado 2 familias.  La misión es una prueba de nuestra fe.  He sido probado, y he aprendido mucho. Amo a la misión.  Gracias por compartir ese gran llamamiento y experiencia conmigo y los demás.   

Mi compañera está luchando con algunos de las normas de la misión, y le cuesta seguir el horario.  A veces me siento mal y no sé como puedo ayudarla a cumplir para que tengamos más unidad y éxito.  ¿Tiene algunos sugerencias? No me gusta "corregir" pero es muy importante que podamos hacer las cosas bien.

Gracias Presidente.
Hasta lunes,

Hermana Woolley