Monday, November 23, 2015

11/23/15 Group Email

This week was full of a ton of little miracles.. The hands of the Lord are everywhere! 

---First off, we had parked our car and were about to say the prayer, when a man gets out of the car parked in front of us who looked Latino.  We got out and started following, to find out where he lives (the stalker side of Missionaries is unreal, especially when you're serving in Canada trying to find people who speak Spanish).  We finally were walking through this neighborhood and I just had the instinct to yell at him.. haha.. so I yelled "Excuse me?!" And he walked over and said he didn't speak any English and was from Colombia...:) So we contacted him and did the whole shpeel. He was pretty interested! I asked him what he was doing over in this part of town and he said he was visiting his friends who are ALSO from Colombia...:) It was such a miracle!! I've learned I just need to open my mouth, even if it means yelling all the way across the street. We went back to that Colombian's house and it was an investigator that had been taught by the other elders before.  He told us he was getting ready, he and his family, to leave for Colombia for vacation.  We asked him when and he said "esta noche" I almost died! We knocked on his door, the exact same day his family was leaving, hours before their flight.  He needed to hear our message, and hopefully he'll read the Book of Mormon on the flight, like I challenged him too!
---This past week I was called a: Doll, Barbie, and a Butterfly  haha
---After we did Zone finding we were sooo cold and so tired so we went to Tim Hortons (doughnut shop place) and one of our members happened to be buying her food right as we walked in and she bought us hot chocolate and it was the best thing ever! The Lord knows where we are and he sends angels :)
---The Quebec Montreal temple was dedicated yesterday, so we got to watch it. It was amazing and President Eyring is the most inspiring man. As we were driving up to the dedication, we saw a man and three little boys, all dressed in suits, pushing a mini van out of the middle of the intersection. It was the cutest thing I've ever seen! We pulled over and it was the Bishop and his family from one of the wards in our Stake. We were able to give his wife a ride up to the dedication, and she told us they all prayed to make it to the meeting on time, and how we were the angels sent to them! 
---Last night, we were going to go visit a less active family. We didn't have our ward list so we called the Elders to give us the address to the Muniz family... We drive all the way down to this address and go up to the door.  The completely active, family Munoz answer.. They had given us the wrong address! But it's okay because as we walked in, I saw my recent convert LEILA SITTING THERE! It was the best thing ever!!!! I was so excited to see her!! But yeah, they were in the middle of a party, so we went in and were just going to give them a message... BUT Latinos love to eat.  So they gave us this huge plate of rice and bananas and meat and a bean soup.  It was all good! We shared a message, which Hermana Munoz started crying and told us how she needed that message and we were an answer to her prayers. It was super spiritual!  We get in the car and Hermana says... We have to eat dinner in seven minutes... yep, we double dinnered.  I've never eaten so much food and I was going to explode by the time we got in the car. We get fed SO MUCH HERE IT"S CRAZY.
---Another story involving food.. haha, we had lunch with a sweet old lady from Guatemala.  She came out with three HUGE plates of: beans, chicken, pasta, and this crazy funky bright bright bright pink weird stuff. It was a mound of it.. We started eating, and oh man... It tasted like olives and pickles combined, which are my two least favorite foods ever! I got through a good portion of it, by eating it along with the pasta. I kept praying and praying to just help me get through this.  The old lady got up to leave and fill up our cups, and Hermana and I at the same time, take this nasty pink food, dump it into our napkins and put it in our bag. I have never had to hold in my laughter so much! I was going to burst, I had to laugh so badly!! It was sooo funny and when we left, we went to dump it into the garbage and it had spilled all over Hermana's things in her bag and turned it bright pink. I was dying, it was so funny :)

Overall this week was really good! I saw the Lord's hands in so many things.  We have two investigators that are doing alright, could be better. We've been working with a lot of less actives, which has been really cool. I love this work! I love the Latino people that live in Calgary, and I wouldn't want to be serving anywhere else! The mission is a huge adventure, full of serving others and preaching the gospel. I love it!
Happy thanksgiving!! 
Con amor,
Hermana Dean 

11/23/15 Pictures

It was snowing SO hard the other night! We just had to go out and run around in it :)
All the Spanish program missionaries got together and had a meeting, so I got to see Hermana Allphin!!! 
 Downtown Calgary is so beatufiul!
CANADA gloves
Our area has the Olympic park.. it's so pretty.  Especially at night with the lights all lit up on the ski hill and the snow covering everything.  Forgot to take a picture of the actual hill... haha whoops. But here's a cool sign of it! 

Monday, November 16, 2015

11/16/15 - Group Email

This week I gained such a strong testimony of... Planning! Every week we weekly plan for a good 4+ hours. Our area(s) are so huge, we have to plan everything down to a T.  On Friday we weekly planned all day, especially for Saturday.  We had all the people we were going to visit, where we were going to go, everything was planned exactly.  Our day did not go as planned.. but it was amazing!! First off we ate lunch with some members. They are from Spain, so they cooked us salmon and it was AMAZING. I love salmon! One of the first meals I've had here that hasn't  been completely crazy haha. Then as we were driving down to a Potentials house to stop by, our Less Active called and asked us to come over and visit him... um, okay! So we went and had a lesson with him. Then we headed back up and decided to stop by another less actives house. She was home and welcomed us in, well it turns out that she had another less active family there with them! So the less active's Mom came in and we taught both of them.  Nos fuimos su casa y headed to dinner.  We had a few minutes before we needed to go in, so we decided to look for a referencia's house. We ended up getting completely bible bashed by some guy from Africa who thought we were crazy.. it wasn't fun haha. We then headed into dinner, which was a family we stopped by a couple weeks ago who are completely inactive. We walk in and they had THREE other less active families there.. FOUR LESS ACTIVE FAMILIES were at that dinner!! It was a miracle! It was a crazy dinner.. they had the smallest house, there were eight adults plus us in the kitchen, 15 or so kids running around. When we got there, the food still had and hour and 20 minutes to cook haha (Latinos take their time when it comes to cooking) and the whole setting was crazy. We spent a couple of hours there and shared a message and left.. Hermana Ratliff and I walked out and just died laughing.. it was the craziest scene with all these Latinos screaming in Spanish, it was so overwhelming, but so good! On Sunday - two of the families came to church! It was sooo cool! So so cool. We've been working with going down the ward list of Less Actives, visiting them and getting to know them, and it has been the biggest miracle. The Lord has directed us to the houses we needed to stop by, which has lead us to other people we needed to visit, and so forth. It has been the biggest miracle! This past week we played Volleyball with our ward and it was SO FUN! Latinos get soooo into sports.  They had all this Spanish music playing and were getting super into it, screaming things in Spanish. It was so awesome. I love the Spanish culture and meeting all these amazing Latinos up here.. they are so loving! The work is going good, still looking for Investigators, but working hard with the Less Actives.  Tengan una buena semana y recuerdan que El Savlador siempre esta aca para nosotros y el sabes las cosas que necesitamos en nuestras vidas
Con amor,
Hermana Dean

Monday, November 9, 2015

11/9/15 Group Email

This week was so good! Since we're both kinda new to this area, we had to figure everything out this week. Which was hard, but man we saw some incredible blessings.  We taught A LOT of less actives, and it was so amazing! We would happen to be driving through an area, pull out the list of names, and we would just choose the name that we thought we needed to visit.  Every single name we picked, was one hundred percent directed by the spirit. One of the names we went to visit, was the cutest, most sweetest elderly couple from Spain.  They were SO excited to see us and we sat and visited with them for awhile.  He told us they can't attend church because she has Alzheimers and can't remember anything.. so sad! So we're going to start teaching them every week :) and another family we picked of the list, was a sweet family from Colombia.  We shared a message with her, and that was that. But the folllowing day at church, one of our members told us that that less active who we visited, called her and said how much it meant that we took our time to visit her and that she hadn't been forgotten! I LOVE working with less actives.  Seeing the light come back into their lives is so amazing and the most rewarding feeling. Funny story of the week, we were eating at our members house the other night and they have this cat... named Fluffy.. that they just love.  We were eating, and the cat jumped up onto the table, walked over my companions food, and jumped into her lap.  I have never had to hold back my laughter as much I did in that moment.  My comp's face was PRICELESS. And the member just kept on talking like nothing was happening.  Oh man, I was dying. I had to put my hand up over my eyes and my elbows on the table, so I couldnt' see my comp, it was that bad.  Hahah it was funny.  The work up here in Canada is going so good! I love it so much. The Spanish is coming along so great and we just have a blast driving around Canada, being inspired to know the families we need to visit.  I love you all! Have a great week!

Con amor, 
Hermana Dean
Ps.. it's snowing and freezing!! Pray for me! 

The city at night!
Last night we were driving and all of the sudden the sky was ORANGE! It was pitch black outside expect for over in the distance.. it was orange and then it faded into green.  The picture doesn't give it justice, but it was a taste of the NORTHERN LIGHTS woot woot, Canada is so pretty! 

Monday, November 2, 2015

11/2/15 - Group Email

Transfers were this week!! It was a hard change.. I absolutely loved my last area, but this new area will be good and I know I'm supposed to be here! We had Leila's baptism on Saturday and it was amazing. She absolutely loved it.  It was such a happy day and I'm so lucky to have had the opportunity to teach her for the past three months! My new area is beautiful! Our church building is right on top of this mountain / hill that overlooks the entire city and the river.. it's so beautiful. Yesterday I got to meet all the members in the Ward. It was really good! I felt just at home and I know I'll grow to love them more and more every day.  Embarrassing moment... I saw a flag pin on this Hermana's shirt at church and it totally looked like Guatemala.. long story short, don't ever try and think you know a flag! It definitley wasn't Guatemala and Latino's do not like it when you try and guess where they are from haha! Halloween was good! We had to be inside at 6 rather than 9, so I taught my companion how to play hand and foot ( the best game ever ) and so we played that for a good couple hours.. it was really fun! But yeah, this week was a lot of moving and getting settled and meeting new people. It was really good! I'm excited to start working here.  This morning we went downtown, across the water, and walked to the Calgary Tower. It was beautifil! and it was snowing ( ohh it was cold ) but it was beautiful! We found a couple people who spoke spanish along the way, which is always fun.  I love serving here in Calgary! It's a beautiful city with amazing and the most loving people.  That's about it for this week.. hasta luego! 
Con amor
Hermana Dean

11/2/15 - Pictures

We booed our entire ward.. and we baked all the cookies from scratch! It took us a good 10 or so hours! it was fun though.  The man next to me is the Mission Leader in the Ward... Hermano Perez
Baptism of Leila.. it was so awesome! She was so happy. 
 Hermana Nelson, the Relief Society president. 
Her son is serving in tay's mission! and speaking qeqchi! 
so we bond over that :)  
Hermana Pavon, One of the greatest ladies I've ever met. 
 Pretty sunset 
Sarah Morales, the cutest little girl ever! 

It was sooo sad having to say goodbye to all the people I"ve grown so close to these past few months... :( 
Luis in the plaid, and his friend, also named Luis, who we've been teaching since September! We've been teaching in their home and Luis has helped us out a ton in all the lessons. Definitely some incredibly spiritual experiences I had in that house! 
Hermana Morales - one of the many reasons I was called to Canada speaking Spanish! 
Transfers... so sad! ;( 
these two elders came out with me and were in my first zone.  
Elder Shah and elder Mcneil.. we became good friends! 
Share a coke with your... SISTER
My first sunday en el barrio.. it was so good!
this is the view right as you walk outside of the church building. So gorgeous! 
Hermana Ratliff, my companion
The Coventry sisters

Walking through downtown to the Tower.. it was COLD
At the top of the tower.. we ate lunch! The floor slowly rotates, so while you eat you are moving! 
and you get to see all sides of the view. it was SO BEAUTIFUL