Dominican Republic

Dominican Republic

Monday, January 26, 2015

We gotta Live Like We’re Dying

January 26, 2015

We gotta Live Like We’re Dying

Okay, so much happened this past week but first of all, CONGRATULATIONS ALANA! I hope that you loved your baptism and that all went well !! And now you can take the sacrament! How cool! Thanks for the pictures and also for the email and updates!  And Ethan Nakatsu? Yeah I remember him! Tell them I said hi and welcome to my ward! Lol I hope that all is going well back home. I'm really sorry if this email is crazy because I'm using a computer that is really slow. But there is a lot to tell you guys.

So, first of all, transfers are tomorrow. And President Corbitt called us personally to tell us what is going on. So, Hermana Maltos is being transferred to the city and she is going to finish training a missionary and Hermana Hernandez is going to become a Hermana leader.I'm really really really going to miss her, my comp. But it's okay. Also, I'm going to stay here in Hato mayor. The thing is, the mission is being reduced. Apparently there are going to be a ton of missionaries coming in and so instead of having the 245 missionaries that we have right now, there needs to be only 200. So president is taking some out right now and so ... I get the entire city of Hato Mayor to myself and my companion, Hermana Nazaire. We lived in the same house for these past two transfers and she's super cool, but we have this ginormous area to ourselves. She worked the other half of our area so I know my area, she knows her area and so together, we are combining areas.Also, we are going to live in our big house all by ourselves :D PARTY!! Hahaha jk jk ... maybe ... I'm a little nervous and stressed about this transfer, but I know that it the Lord will provide for us and will help us in all that we do. Plus, we have great members here and I think we will have some baptisms in a little bit ;)

This past week has been kinda crazy. We have been working hard and doing all we can to find people. I'm excited for our adventure that me and Hermana Nazaire are going to have. President also told us that some missionaries are going to be finishing their missions early because of the numeral limit so ... for that reason, the title. I may not have as much time as I thought i would in the DR. We will see! So for that reason, the title. I'm going to live every day like I'm dying  ... well, l.iterally, no, hopefully hahaha but live every day to it's fullest. There's a lot of changes happening but I can only hope for the best. 

Anyway, all is well here in Hato Mayor. I hope that all is going well in hawaii too! Thank you all for your love and support! Love you all and talk to you real soon!

Love, aloha and amor, 
Hermana Ho

Monday, January 19, 2015

Life in the DR

Okay, so yes, thank you all so much for all of your love and support, your emails, and also for the package! It was nice to receive and to share the white rabbit candy with everyone. My companion pointed out to me that the white rabbit candy tastes like a candy that we have here, called dulce de leche or milk candy. I like both! :D

So this past week, we went to the temple! Man, it was a beautiful experience! As always. But what made it even more special was that I took Piwai through with me (aka my family name that was sent to me:D) It was awesome. And I think she's been waiting for a while to receive these ordinances. It was also nice to be with some of the missionaries from different parts of the mission and to see them again. I hope that you guys can go the temple as often as you can! Also, idk when we are going to the temple again, but if you can, please keep looking for family names! Not only to complete family history work, but because this, in and of itself, is missionary work. Like earthly missions, there are many people waiting specifically for you to do their work, to bring them the gospel. I know when we do family history work, we are helping those on the other side of the veil. 

Dad, to answer your question: no, we don't have the program with splits with the missionaries. Our branch is tiny and the only people eligible to go on a mission are young men lol oh and one young woman. But I will ask around about it because that could really help some other people in other areas. And sorry, I remember you trying to get me to do splits haha but I had work and stuffs. I think the mini mission would be good for Ammon, if he wants to do it. As they say, you don't know what the mission life is like until you've been a missionary. 

The mission here is good. We have a lot of people progressing. Sorry, I don't have any crazy stories ... oh wait, no I do have one. But first, I'll tell you about the people. One guy we just started teaching was a contact from November and since we met him, he would always pass by in the streets on his motor cycle and say hi to us. one week ago, he came to church. By himself. No one else. The guy's brave! And he said he liked the church! We had our first lesson with him after that, and wow, the guy is ready to be baptized! Heavenly Father prepared him and now I think he's ready! Also, with Noelia, she is doing well. Still having problems, but it's only a matter of time before she enters into baptism. We also have the Diaz family, a couple, who are slowly but surely on their way to deciding to be baptized. Literally with them, it's little by little. They've known the gospel for 1 year now, and they know that the church is true and that they need to be baptized. But they are waiting to give the final yes or no. But I think once they do, they will be strong in their decision. 

So crazy story. Here in Hato Mayor, there are some people with some mental problems. We have two older guys who come to church with some mental problems. one is super intelligent and paints. The other ... is real crazy. But apparently, before his loco problems, he was a very intelligent sophisticated man. Anyway, yesterday, that guy, the crazy number 2, came to church. (by the way, he's in love with my companion). He came up to us and said something to us then started singing "Dios es el senor! Dios es el senor! Hosana! Hosana!" which translates to "God is our Lord! God is our Lord! Hosanna! Hosanna!" Hahaha crazy guy. I think he sang to every class yesterday hahahaha it was so funny!

Anyway, so that's it for now. I hope all is going well back home and that everyone is doing ok. Thank you so much for your love and support for the missionaries! We really appreciate all the prayers for us and the love that accompanies them. I love you all and will see you all soon before you know it! 

Love, aloha, y amor,
Hermana Ho

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Kamalei participated in Alana's baptism!

Much to Alana's surprise, I asked Kamalei in the beginning of January if she would like to give the Baptism talk at Alana's baptims.  On the pday before Alana's baptism, I received Kamalei's talk and Alliyah read it over the podium at the baptism.  It was really special.... and here's the talk:

A Baptismal Talk for a Special Person ;)

Hola! Como estan! Hey everyone! Thank you for your emails and for your love and support! Also, thank you for the package! I got the photo thingy and if I have time after this email, I'm going to try and send some pictures! But first things first, i got a talk all ready, so I'm going to send that, if that's okay. Here it is:

First of all, I just want to say congratulations Alana! I'm so proud of you and your decision to be baptized! You are about to take a very important step that is going to change your life! 

Today, I've been asked to give a small talk on baptism. In a few minutes Alana, you will be walking into the baptismal font with Ammon to be baptized by immersion. Once you come out of the water, you will be completely clean of all sins, being perfect. All the mistakes you made before this moment will be washed away completely and you will be a new person. 

Not only will you be completely clean, but after you receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost, you will become a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints. as members of the church, we promise the Lord that we will always remember Him, that we will keep His commandments, and that we will take upon us His name. In turn, the Lord promises to always be with us. These promises that we make with the Lord are called covenants, and each Sunday, we can remember our baptismal covenants or promises we make with the Lord through the sacrament. As we take the sacrament, we should listen to the sacrament prayers. I know you have waited a loooooong time to take the sacrement! As you take the sacrament, you should also remember this day, your baptism day, and the promises you made with the Lord. We are not perfect, and we may make mistakes. But always remember that our Heavenly Father loves us and will help us. Before I close, I want to share a part of a scripture with you from the Book of Mormon in Mosiah 5:7. This is King Benjamin talking to his people, giving them counsel. But I'm going to change the scripture around and adde your name into it. As I read this, think of how much your Heavenly Father loves you. It says: And now, Alana, because of the covenant (or promises) which ye have made (or will make this day), ye shall be called (a child) of Christ, ... his daughter." You are a daughter of God Alana and real soon, will be HIs representative. I know He is proud of you for taking this grand step in your life, as am I. I know that Jesus Christ lives and loves us. I know that it is through baptism and through keeping and remembering our baptismal covenants that we can live with Him again for time and all eternity. I love you so very much and  congratulate you on this special day.

These things I say in the sacred name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Love, Hermana Ho

Monday, January 12, 2015

You’re Gonna Hear me Roar!

Haha okay, so that song may have been sung a couple days ago just cause I like it. ... a lot. haha I'm so music deprived in the mission, but that's okay. After the mission, I just might have one full day of listening to music everywhere I go! Wait, maybe that'll be every day ... lol

Anyway, so this past week was a little rough, to say the least. Well, there's the ups and downs. This past week for one, was HOT. Man, the sun is strong here and idk why! But I will take advantage of the breeze we have for now before it gets hot again. My head has been hurting a little since saturday and I think it's because of the heat. idk, we'll see. Also, I had my first ever really ... rude encounter. we went to this elderly couple's house whom we had contacted earlier that week to share the Restoration with them. When we got there, the husband was sitting outside, watching tv and we said hi. He was polite, but we could tell he wasn't too interested. He called his wife and when she came to the door, he said to her "talk with them." She took one look at us and started yelling at her husband(or maybe it was at us,we aren't too sure). Neither me nor my companion understood everything she said, but it was something along the lines of "I was sleeping and you woke me up for them! ..." and then she stomped back into the house. Needless to say, we got the message. The husband looked at us with his hands raised in the air like "idk, I'm sorry" and my sweet companion said "it's okay. Bye! Have a good day." Ouch. Yeah that experience is the one that sticks out the most in my mind. It hurt a lot, more because we have the gospel, we have the truth! And literally, us missionaries are standing in the place of Christ. So to think how He feels with every rejection like this. And dad, yeah, sometimes I wanna grab them and shake them, and say that they should listen. Sometimes I wanna roar like Katy Perry. Lol, jk. but no, for the most part, it just hurts. But it's their agency. 

On the bright side, we have a golden investigator. I'm not going to give her name, but she reminds me a lot of mom, in her actions and her personality. She is married to a very wealthy husband and has 3 kids. She is the sister of one of our recent converts and is amazing! She's been too a lot of different churches and has a lot of experience in religion and when we started teaching her, she was ready and is accepting and living everything we teach her. The only problem is that her mother in law is like a minister in the Jehovah Witness church and when she found out our investigator came to church with us once, she was mad and threatened to not support our investigator. Normally, that wouldn't be a problem, but our investigator is having slight problems in her marriage, so she relies a lot, physically and economically, on the support of her mother in law to help her with the kids. So for now, She won't be getting baptized, but the first moment she has, she will be baptized. Only a matter of time. But man, the woman is amazing! So humble, loving, giving and accepting of the gospel. 

And it's people like her that make the mission worth it :D Despite the many downs in the mission, there's many ups. It's people like her that I'm here, for those who are ready. And sometimes, we gotta go through rough stuff to find the diamonds or even for us to become like diamonds. One thing I've learned is that whenever our days are rough here, Heavenly Father wants us to learn something from these things and to prepare because after the rough stuff, there's something great! Always in the mission, always. Just gotta be ready! hahaha

Anyway, thank you all for your love and support and for letting me be here to serve. thank you for your prayers. Sometimes, I wonder why some miracles happen and when I can't think of anything I've done, I think it's because of your prayers. So thank you! Also, please thank the primary for their little book that they sent me for christmas! i absolutely love it and can't wait to meet them all face to face! 

Love you all and stay strong! Remember, after the hard stuff comes the good stuff so endure to the end! Look for the positives in the negatives! Love you all!

Love and aloha,
Hermana Ho

Monday, January 5, 2015

And a Happy New Year!

So, thank you on the update on life! Sorry dad, I didn't write early this morning. We went on a little adventure here in Hato Mayor with our mission leader and his family. They have a ... campo? it's like property, land property, and they have like pigeon peas growing there, chinola, cows, sugar cane, not much, but yeah they have that and they invited us there for lunch with them too and it was completely awesome! But anyway, that's why I'm writing a lot later. 

So, this past week was chill. Nothing new really. Oh, except on January 1, we couldn't leave the house until 3pm because of all the after effects of the partys and stuff. And later, when we did leave at 3pm, there were a TON of people drinking and a lot of peopleout in the streets on their motorcycles and stuff and me and my comp didn't feel very comfortable (physically and maybe the Holy Ghost too, played a role in that). so we called our district leader (who is from this country) to ask his opinion and he told us if we didn't have any set appointments, it's best to return home. So return home we did! I don't know what would've happened if we stayed out, but I'm glad I didn't get to find out. This weekend is party weekend too. No idea why. But everyone is calling it "dias de los reys"or "king days." well, I'm pretty sure these people find every excuse to party (that came from the mouth of a lot of people here, not just mine!). 

But yeah, life here is good :) Dad, you asked about the appointment we had with the catholic. It was actually very good! We went to her house and she looked for her BOM, brought it to us, read something out of 3 Nephi about not having repitious prayers, and said "you know, I agree with this. I think this is really good." yada yada yada ... "and you know, the people in church, they just talk and talk and talk and I don't have a chance to talk." "Wow hermana. Before we begin, can you offer the opening prayer?" "Me?" "Yes, you"well, okay." she gave the prayer and was so honored to. And later we talked about the BOm and she likes it cause it's similar to the Bible. I think she's got potential! But we shall see. 

As for our other investigators, we have 3 with baptismal dates but all of them have their personal trials (a lot has to do with family and priorities). It's hard to tell someone what they need to do when you haven't experienced it for your self. For me, anyway. And it's hard to tell someone to fear God more than man. But everyone has their own agency. I just don't want to say or think "We tried to tell you but you wouldn't listen! You didn't do what we told you to do!" when the 2nd coming comes. I think that's gonna be the hardest part about the 2nd coming. I think we're going to see the faces of all these people and be like , I'm sorry, I tried to tell you but you wouldn't listen. Or I'm sorry, I told you what needed to be done, but you didn't follow those things. Or the other thing I fear is if I have to say, I'm sorry, I saw you, and I thought about sharing the gospel with you, but I didn't because I was scared. Yeah, i think those are the things I fear most about the second coming. Having to apologize to people, whether or not it was my fault that they did or didn't hear the gospel. other than that, I'm excited to see Christ again and to finish the last part of our journey in the Plan of Salvation!

On a happier note, I'm going to be setting some goals and so we'll see how that goes! As a missionary, you set goals every week for your investigators, but I realized I can help thjem if I set goals for myself too. So, I have an experiment, but I'll see how it goes. 

Anyway, love you all and take care! Have an amazing week and keep up the good work in all that you do! Talk to you all soon!

Love and aloha, 
Hermana Ho

P.S. thank you for your love and support for me, in prayers, packages, letters, fasts, and emails. It really does mean a lot to me here and I greatly appreciate all!