I sent Anne a birthday package to the house. I hope she gets it soon, if not already. (I did and I loved it!! -Aine )
We had a good week, we met with La Mujer de Calisco, Mexico, the great-grandmother who speaks no English and reads no Spanish, twice. The first time we taught the Restoration, starting with prophets and going up until Joseph Smith receiving the first vision, stopping there cuz we wanna show her "The Restoration" 20-min video in SPANISH yay. By "we taught" I mean I read mostly from the Spanish pamphlet and the young member we brought with us and my companion put in a coupla of tidbits here and there which I attempted to translate. She is a very sweet, loving woman, hugging her goodbye she caught my hands and peered into my hands and asked me what my name was. I realized my name tag was hiding beneath my coat and pulled it out but then I remembered she doesn't read, so I said, "Hermana Ashbrook." She tried to say my name but it was difficult. I introduced Sister Pete as "Hermana Petersen" and said she can call us hermana and hermana. HA.
The next day we went back with our ward mission leader and we are so grateful for him. We could NOT figure out the TV for the life of us, so he went back home to grab his laptop so we can watch the DVD on it, and we chatted with La Mujer in her kitchen, admiring the huge bottle of Tapatio on the kitchen table (hot sauce). I LOVE TAPATIO. We watched the video, en espanol, and afterwards, La Mujer had this wondering look on her face. We felt the Spirit so strong. She asked a question, something about baptism. Towards the end of the vid we see Joseph Smith's father getting baptized so maybe it was something like that. Man I wish I coulda understood her! Hahah. That stinkin gift of tongues hasn't quite hit me yet. Not knowin what to say I taught that the authority to baptize had come to Joseph Smith from Peter, James, and John, three of the original apostles, who came down from heaven and gave him the authority. She nodded and said "Oh" as if I'd answered her question.
Even though it's Pday we're gonna go over there again at 3 because there is a Spanish-speakin member in our branch but his only day off is today. I want him to ask her what the question was she asked after the video! We'll get to the bottom of this. She lives in one of the trailer courts in Petersburg, and our member works at the police station, and he said his presence nor his vehicle is liked in that trailer court, but he said he'll come.
Adam, we had dinner with them last night and he told us a hilarious story of a tall, gruff, super intimidating police officer who worked a day shift after a long time of working night shifts....and he pulled a man over and the man in his car just could not keep back his laughter. The police officer barked, "What are you laughing at?" and the man said, "What's with the flashlight?" The police officer glowered, realized he was holding his flashlight, and was taken aback. He told the man, "All right, get outta here," and waved him off. HHAHAA. So watch out, Adam. Old habits die hard. BAHAHA.
We have met with Mr. Mormon.org Card Guy like four times. He is doing awesome. Our ward (I guess it's really branch) mission leader said he still doesn't seem to have that burning desire to know, he reads kinda when we ask him to instead of doing it all on his own, but he is still progressing for sure. he is a funny guy, he's super street smart, it's hard to understand his manner of language sometimes, and he talks about things in a super round about way so you gotta sit there patiently until he brings it all together again. And he likes to talk a lot. He had us for THREE hours on Friday. Hahaha. But we've been reading the Book of Mormon with him, and I made him a "dictionary" of terms like "brethren" and "whither" and "murmuring" so he can understand the jargon of the book. He asked us where the Ten Commandments were; if he's gonna get baptized he wants to make sure he can commit to the commandments. We told him, "Well, there are a few more commandments than the ten." He asked, "Like what?" and we briefly taught tithing and the word of wisdom, we'll teach them more in depth later, we'd already been sitting for like 2 hours and I was getting stiff hahaha. Suddenly our branch mission leader showed up (he was supposed to be there two hours ago...we were in the bunkhouse lounge, the room with the computers and the foozball tables that are available for the cannery workers that are housed there, like Mr.Mormon.org Card Guy) and so that was awesome, cuz lessons are way better with members of the church present. Crazy that we were still there, we hadn't meant to but that's kinda what happened. He got filled in on what we'd been talking about and they kept talking and so we weren't gonna up and leave at that second...
There was cool moment where, toward the end of the third hour of this lesson, where I was dying to get up and stretch and wondering how long we would be sitting there, that I told myself YOU GOTTA LISTEN, GEE WHIZ HAVE SOME PATIENCE and I tuned in to what the man was saying and at the moment I realized he was talking about the "Footsteps" poem. He got to the point where the man in the poem asks God why there's only one set of footsteps on the sand and God says "it was then that I carried you" and as he spoke, he got teary-eyed and stopped. Wow, I'd never seen emotion from Mr.Mormon.org Card Guy, so that was pretty cool. And another cool part is that we asked him if he's ready to watch General Conference next week and he said he would come watch even if he had work, this only happened every six months and he didn't want to miss his chance. YAY AWESOME PEOPLE, these are truly the Lord's elect.
AND, we met with the Puerto Rican family, the daughter had some friends over and the son was playing video games but because of his behavioral situation it's kinda better if he's doing something that distracts him while he listens in the background, he's a multi-tasker for sure. Mama Puerto Rico said she liked the Restoration video (we watched it with them too , last week) and she paused and then said, "I think it's true." WHAT THE HECK, we just stared at her, in my head I was like, "Okay you're getting baptized." But she still hasn't prayed about Joseph Smith and she needs to do that, it's so important to pray. BUT THEN GUESS WHAT, Mama and Daughter and Son Puerto Rico came to CHURCH on Sunday, ALONG with Sweet 15 (she always comes hahaha) and Mr. Mormon.org Card Guy, so we had five investigators at church, and El Colombiano's sister came, and we have a lesson set up with her on Tuesday, and hopefully we'll acutally get to teach her and pick HER up as an investigator, SHE really liked church and loves learning about every religion and wants to know how this church started.
Anyway, Mama Puerto Rico liked church too, it was just a lot, you know, three hours, but she was nodding and so was La Colombiana during Sunday School (we have an awesome teacher that really engages our attention) and agreeing with everything, and our branch is awesome, they greet newcomers with such open arms.
Good times, guys.
Transfer calls are this Saturday, so that's crazy, these past two transfers have felt like just one. I've been out ten months already, can you believe it? That's nuts.
Funny El Colombiano Moment:
He wanted to meet with us on Thursday. "Can we meet at 2?" I asked him on the phone.
"What about one? Or 1:15, 1:30?"
"I'm playing piano at the hospital for the old people at 1."
"Oh, you'll be at the hospital at 1? I'll be there!"
"Haha, are you serious?"
"Yes, see you at 1, bye-bye!!" He hung up.
We got to the hospital, parking along the curb outside the Emergency Room entrance. He was waiting up above, on the other side of the driveway where the ambulence goes. He spread open his arms wide. "Welcome to my hospital!"
We snorted. I started walking up the bit of grass.
"NO!" he cried, pointing furiously at my feet. "Ticket! One dollar! MY hospital!"
BAHAHHA and there you have a bit of the humor of El Colombiano. Love you bye bye!!
p.s. Mom I'm glad you liked Music and the Waking Word, Sister Pete came up with some of the words, hahaha, the "pick out a pleasant outfit" part (instead of "outlook"). What did you mean, you didn't do the computer? It wasn't a webcast, it's just on polycom (phone), is that what you meant? Juneau zone is doing it again THIS saturday, don't know yet if Petersburg will contribute, the zone leaders will probably text us all Friday night and maybe some of the other companionships will do stuff, but you can definitely listen in. You can listen in every day until Saturday, if you want, and listen to the other zones, when they do the hellos and the goodbyes in all the different languages I try to chime in with Spanish.