Monday, January 26, 2015

Getting to Know Talanga

Well, I feel like I am officially getting to know Talanga a little better.  I have one more week before our next exchanges. where Hermana C will leave the area this time, and I will stay here. So I'm going to need to pick up the pace and get to know it a little better this week. haha :) 
This week we had exchanges and we went to Juticalpa which is 2 and a half hours away from Talanga.  Yikes, and for half the time, we didn't have a seat on the bus. haha But oh man, I am just so grateful for the companions I have had here on the mission.  I got to leave with sweet Hermana H, who is new in the mission, and we went to work in Juticalpa. :) It made me remember my first few weeks in the mission, even though I still feel new. But I am beginning to see a new side of the mission, in having to work and help out in problems in companionships and so on. But nothing too too big. thank goodness :)
Traveling back and forth from exchanges definitely takes up our time here in Talanga unfortunately :( so a little bit slow this week in the work.  But Mondays here are always my favorite.  Not because it is Pday, haha but becuase we have family home evenings with 2 families that just recently got baptized with Hermana C before I came.  My favorite part of the mission is to meet with recent converts after they have been baptized and see the difference in them.  :) It is so awesome seeing these two families start putting the principles of the gospel in their homes.  Last Monday for our FHE, Hermana C was teaching the dad how to start FHE.  We asked him what song he wanted to sing for the opening hymn, and he said "Angels we have heard on high." I always like the Christmas songs, so that is what we sang :) haha Later after the lesson, we asked the wife what song she wanted to sing to close, and she said after searching through the hymn book, ummm I think "Angels we have heard on high." haha Hermana C and I just looked at each other for a little bit and I couldn't help but laugh, because she totally didn't remember that is what we sang for the opening hymn, and also that they really like those Christmas songs here. haha :) 
The other family that just got baptized with Hermana C is doing awesome, too.  The dad always wears a white shirt and tie for FHEs.  It is so cute. 
I feel in these last couple weeks I have learned so much, and wish I would've known what I know now back in my old area. :( But I feel these last couple weeks I have really come to better understand our role here in the mission and as a missionary.  We really are so blessed to represent the Savior, His Church, and our famlies in teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ to others.  I am so grateful for you all, :) and for your examples of people who live the gospel! 
Love you! 
Hermana Nichols 
PS they celebrate dia de mujer here (day of the women) and sweet Esteban, the ward secretary bought all the women in the ward a rose. :)  

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Temple Trip & Exchanges

Hey hey family! 
How fast this week went, well, like all of them! This week we got to go to the temple! WHooo.. always my favorite, and the temple always looks so beautiful.  I also saw Hermana P and Hermana K who came with me from the CCM, I always love seeing them, so that was a treat, too. :)  My Spanish.. well is gettting there.  I guess I am understanding now when it says in my blessing, learning the language will be "relatively easy." haha I definitely can understand more than I can express, which still is frustrating at times.  This week, super sad that one of our baptisms,  L, who is 18 and who I thought was super prepared to get baptized, more than any of my other investigators, didn't pass her interview. She said she had a hard time believing there was a need for the Book of Mormon.  Super sad, because she leaves for Tegucigalpa to study at the U, and will only be back on the weekends.  We are still going to try and teach her, :( but will be more difficult now.  But Hermana C has taught me SO much lately.  Oh man, those shorter lessons are really helping. haha We have a lot of people preparing for baptism, even though that doesn't mean all of them will get baptized. She is teaching me how to work more efficiently.  This was the first Sunday on my mission where I didn't feel SO stressed in getting our investigators to come to church.  They came on their own! Wow, I am learning how to just do my part and let the investigators do their part.  Because I feel like previously I have been trying to do their part, too in accepting the gospel.
I like what Presidente told us in our meeting.  "No one can stay active in the gospel without reading the Book of Mormon regularly." and how there is a difference between being active in the gospel and active in the church.  We always leave something for our investigators to read in the BoM every time, and most of them are reading! :) Hermana C was sick this past week, and I read 15 chapters in the BoM. haha  I dont think I have read that much in one sitting, and I know there is such power that comes into our lives when we read and study the Book of Mormon. :) 

Exchanges with the sisters this week went well, and I feel like I am learning more from them than I could teach them.  
I am well here in Talanga, feeling a lot better than last week! Those bucket showers are great :) haha But I am doing well! 

Miss you all! Love you! 
Hermana Nichols 

Monday, January 12, 2015

New Area

Well, this week has flown! Wow is it really already the 12th of Jan?? So I am currently in Talanga! New area!   Last Monday, they made calls and told us who would be leaving the area, but you don't find out where you are going until you get to Tegucigalpa.  It was nice of Bishop to do a small party with the ward and with all of the missionaries Monday night to say goodbye to everyone.  I was so sad to leave La Paz, and I definitely miss it over there.
My new companion, Hermana Castillo is 24 and is from Costa Rica... a Tica as they say.  She is a crack up, and has about 13 months in the mission.  You could definitely say that I have learned SO much here, just in this last week.  Also, President called me Monday to call me as one of the Sister Training Leaders.  We are over 6 companionships of sisters, and will be having interchanges with the sisters 2 times a week.  Our job is to set the example with our area for the sisters, and to help out with any problems in companionships.  haha I definitely feel like I will be learning a lot more from them than they will from me.  I had my first training meeting in Tegucigalpa this week with the ZLs and Presidente, and since they raised the standards of the mission, oh man, we are just working so so hard everyday, to try and reach the standards.  My first day here Hermana Castillo and I put like 3 more baptismal dates,  I wanted to go back to La Paz and put into practice all that I learned here! Talanga is similar to La Paz, just more pueblo.  We live with 2 other hermanas, and our house is big! One is hermana H who came with me from the CCM.  She is the one we met in Provo, haha so that's pretty fun. We do have somewhat of a washing machine though so that is super nice! But the water is definitely colder here, and we shower out of a bucket. :( haha.   Branch Pres here is awesome! Super humble, and super nice!  Our ward mission leader is preparing to go on a mission soon, and is a recent convert, he is awesome and they both work super well with the missionaries.  Hermana Castillo and I were both sick last night, but feeling better this morning.  I'm super excited to be here in Talanga, and can already see it is definitely going to be hard work, but the people here are being prepared to accept this gospel! 
I'm definitely a little nervous being in a new area, and in a new position of the mission, but its all good.  President reminded us all in our meeting this week that there is no time to be discouraged.  We don't have much time here in the mission, and especially in an area, to leave it better than when we came.  If we want different results, we must start doing something different.  

Miss you all! :) 
Hermana Nichols 

Monday, January 5, 2015

Last Days in La Paz

Well, though it is not for sure yet, it is almost for sure that I will be leaving La Paz.  I have been saying some goodbyes to members, investigators and our converts here in La Paz.  :( 
These last couple days the members have been super nice, giving us so much food lately!  Hermana McKrola and I do not want to think about food for the next couple days.  But this last week, we have found some positive investigators that we are excited to meet with soon! Even though we wrote last Monday, our pday was Wednesday because it was New Year's Eve, and Pres was worried about the missionaries being out on the streets. so we all had to enter our houses at like 6, which was kinda weird, but Hermana McKrola and I made that awesme caramel dip, thanks Kare, and I tried to write my scholarship essays Mom, while Hermana McKrola caught up on letters.  

Some highlights of the week: 
met with D (remember the one who didn't want to come to his confirmation, well one of them at least... haha) 
He is doing so much better, and I can totally see how this Gospel has brightened his life. We went with our mission leader, and D should be getting the priesthood soon! 
J is getting the priesthood soon.  He bore his testimony in Sacrament meeting and the Elders said it was awesome. (J lives in the other ward boundaries) He will probably be in the Elders Quorum pres. when they switch up the Presidency, the Elders said. :) Jose is inviting his friends to come with him to church now. :) He said that he is going to go to his friend's house to go get him since that is what we tried to do, even though he lives so far! haha
Not too much to report, the Elders had some baptisms this week.  One being a pastor for another church, which was pretty awesome! Hermana McKrola and I are coming to an end :( super sad to leave.  We will find out for sure though, if I go today. 
Love you guys! miss you all! 
Hermana Nichols!