Hermana Wood's Missionary Adventures in the "Capital of the Peruvian Amazon"


Monday, December 19, 2016

Christmas in Tarapoto

hola, friends and familia! it's getting harder and harder to write these group e-mails; so much is happening every day! to really fill you in, i'd be typing for hours. ;) but, i'll try to condense it!

while we were proselyting this week, trying to find new people to teach (because we have very few), we found family #1. they were uninterested, but we asked them if they knew of anyone else (friends or neighbors) who might like to hear a christmas message. family #1 sent us two houses down to family #2, where a 16-year-old and her parents told us they were 7th day adventists. we kindly asked them for a referral of someone we might teach, and they sort of gestured across the street.

across the street, we chose a house with a woman out front. when she saw us approaching, she ran inside and literally hid behind her door. we said "hola!" and, she turned off the light. ;) my companion, hermana briggs, sighed: "you choose the next contact, because i can't seem to get it right!"

we then talked with a woman who doesn't celebrate christmas, because "it's such a worldly holiday" (and she refused to hear differently).

we kept walking.

then, we went to the house of a mother and her son. the mom, lucy, came right up to the door and said "hola, amigas!" we talked to her about the "light the world" initiative, and she seemed interested. we set up a return appointment, which she wasn’t home for, but we'll be going back soon! it was such a relief to talk to someone like lucy! moral of the story: even when the rejection is discouraging, keep pushing through! because, somewhere you have a lucy waiting for you. :)

all the sisters in tarapoto

our zone! merry christmas!

the two zones in tarapoto!

in other news, we had our christmas zone conference this week! president and hermana li couldn't be there, which was really sad. also, i was asked to give a 25-minute training, which was nerve wrecking. but then, i had the privilege of accompanying our zone on the piano (twice) for our christmas performances. that was so fun! i also played a solo piece, "o come, o come, emmanuel," for the two zones. i think it really helped us feel the christmas spirit!

our investigator's house flooded,
but we made the best of it!

indira, who will be baptized the 28th of january :)

last but not least, our investigator, inidra, came to church!!! it was difficult for her, because (remember) she can't really walk, but we arranged for a member to pick her up. she stayed all three hours, even though her foot started swelling really bad. i grabbed a garbage can, and we propped that foot right up on top of it, haha. she loved coming to church and is still good to be baptized on january 28th! :)

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! celebrate it to the fullest! i hope you've all been able to "light the world" during this special season! love you!

hermana wood

More from this week's message to Hermana Wood's dad:
i can't believe i only have seven more weeks here - so crazy. time is flying! briggs and i are pretty sure she is going to be transferred, so we are sad. :( i'll be directing the area, then, after just six weeks being in it (plus, my responsibilities as sister leader). trying to learn all the streets still!

souvenir shopping with some of my christmas money :)

i feel recently like i've gotten better at teaching with the spirit and feeling the spirit in the lessons. it's harder than you'd think it would be as a missionary! there are so many things to do in a single lesson, and you sometimes feel like you're fighting for the investigator's attention or even their understanding (just because that's how some people are here). but, the spirit is so important. teaching with it is a skill so necessary for missionary work; i'm really striving to be in tune with the spirit! LOVE YOU.

we climb for our coconuts :)

More from this week's message to Hermana Wood's mom:
this week, noemi told us that she'd been talking with her aunt, who told her that she shouldn't listen to us anymore. it was such a sad appointment. this whole week, we continue facing lots of rejection. we aren't getting discouraged, but it's hard. that night, after noemi told us she couldn't change churches, we went home at 9pm, and i sobbed for a good half hour. i just wanted everyone to have the gospel and was so sad for those who don't accept or those who haven't even heard about the restoration. i thought of the scripture in nephi, where he says his eyes wet his pillow every night because of the wickedness of his people. or the one about the sons of mosiah, where they quake and tremble at the thought that any one soul would have to endure endless torment. that's exactly what i felt, and i've never felt that way before. it was a strangely spiritual experience - i just felt so much love for everyone in the world who didn't have the gospel. i love this work truly, with all my heart. and i love YOU!

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