Wednesday, August 31, 2016

8/22/16 See you on the other side

Well here it comes. I just got out of my last interview with President Catala. It has been a wild week. I´ll be seeing you all in just a few days but I just wanted to say thank you to all who have had me in there prayers during this last year and a half. I will never ever be able to express in words all that this experience has meant to me. It has absolutely changed my life. I am so grateful to have learned more about my Savior Jesus Christ and the roles that he plays in our lives. I know that God lives and loves us and blesses us always. Even just for trying. I feel grateful to my Father in Heaven and my Savior and the opportunity they have given me to know of the Restored Gospel and to teach and testify of it. I know that this church is true. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God and I know the Thomas S Monson is a living prophet on earth today. Love ya! Keep being bakánes.
Hermana Saunders
''Meet you there''

Monday, August 15, 2016

Just your typical best week ever

Another wonderful week has come and gone. I sure do love my sector, my
comp etc. The mission really is the best place on earth.
We saw MANY miracles this week. It was incredible. We set some pretty
high goals and were running all over the place to complete them. Not
sure I have ever been more stressed, but it was totally worth it. God
blessed us so much.
The members were such a support for us. It was a struggle at first
getting them to come out with us when I got here, but we have found
the more often they come, they more the want to leave with us again.
It is incredible how missionary work is like that. It is hard. It is
tiring but you can just never get enough of it. I sure do love being
able to share the gospel everyday.
Hermana Saunders

Monday, August 8, 2016

Zone Conference and Mini Combos and New Vision

Herman Tesch and Hermana Briggs (My gurs)

Great week! Sorry I don't have pictures again- you will just have to wait another week... or two.
I am so pumped about these new ideas our mission president is having. I'll admit I was pretty skeptical about the changes but we have been able to see lots more excitement in the members to work with us and a lot of miracles when it comes to finding too. I really miss the Arringtons but it is clear to see the Catalas are here to give it their all.
We had zone conference/Tesch Class and interviews all on Wednesday. Me, my comp and the sister leaders of Penco put on a class... It was a bit of a disaster but we had fun doing it. I got to say goodbye to the Tesch couple- it was sad- until Sister Tesch told started lecturing me about how I had to be actively looking to get married (¡Chau no mas!). It was a crazy day and at the end we only had a few hours to work but it was something that had us all motivated to take on the new vision the Lord has for the mission. 
I also had my last mini-cambio :,( But it was a lot of fun. I was with Hermana Farnsworth again- she is my 'sister' in the mission because we were trained by the same people. I sure have learn a lot from her. She has grown a lot too the the time I have known her. I think Mini-cambios are the thing that I have liked most about being a HTL- because I grow from them more than they do usually.
We had a ward activity- a 'Matiada' were everyone drank 'Mate' (except us) and we made this yummy fried food called sopipillas (Basically Chilean Paradise). We had a blast. I promise I will send pictures next week.
We are in Chillan right now to buy some souvenirs. It is way beautiful.

This week we had a Sunday centered on Charity. We talked about how charity is much more than actions of service but a way of mind. I invite you to read 1 Corinthians 13. I know you have read it but it will do you some good, like it did me this week.
I Love you!
Hermana Saunders

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Trabajemos hoy el la obra del Señor‏

What a great week! We saw many blessings with finding new people to teach and working with members. I know that the Lord has seen our efforts and I know that he always blesses us for trying.

Something cool we got to do this week was help a recent convert get ready for the day. She is in a wheel chair and can do very little on her own. Working with her has really helped me come to realize how many people need us. As missionaries, as members of the church and as children of God. There is ALWAYS someone who needs your help. 
I was reading the women's session of conference once again this week and I was once again impressed with the call to serve our fellow man. Elder Eyring quoted King Benjamin in Mosiah 4:26
 “And now, for the sake of these things which Ihave spoken unto you that is, for the sake of retaining remissionof your sins from day to day, that ye may walk guiltless before God—I would that ye should impart of your substance to the poor, everyman according to that which he hath, such as feeding the hungry,clothing the naked, visiting the sick and administering to their relief,both spiritually and temporally, according to their wants” 
I know that to retain a remission of our sins it is necessary to serve others. In our quest for perfection and to be constantly improving we can not over look charity. 
I invite you to look around and serve this week.
Love you!
Hermana Saunders

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Come what may and and LOVE them.

The first week of this transfer went really fast. I'm praying that the time will slow down before it ends.

We got so. much. rain. It was really incredible I don't think I have ever been in a storm so strong than what we had on Wednesday. It has been relatively dry, but we got soak to out covenants this week. I thought the wind was going to pick us up. We walk out the door to work after lunch and within less then 30 seconds my umbrella had bent into 30 different angles. It was an adventure for sure. I love my mission.

We had leadership council with President Catala this week and lets just say everything is getting flipped up side down... but it is all for the better and we are excited to see the changes. It was really fun to see some mission friends that I haven't seen for sometime.

Friday we had Mini-missionaries come to our sector and work with us. I was in a trio with a Hermana Novoa from Concepcion who is preparing for the mission and a Hermana Medina who just got baptized 3 months ago and is in a small branch in our stake. It was a lot of fun, although I felt bad we didn't get to teach many people and knocked doors all day. Hermana Novoa said it was a little bit out a wake up call to what the mission was really like. I hope it didn't scare her too much. 

Sunday we had a great class in Principios del Evangelio about sacrifice. It was just what I needed to hear. I had a really sweet impression from the spirit that truly the biggest sacrifice that we can make is to love others. Even though no one opened there doors to us in the rain and cold this week I realized the Lord has called me to love them. So that is what I will do. 

We are in the middle of a zone activity. We have been playing games all morning and we are just waiting for the pizza to cook. Better go snag a piece before it is all gone. Sure do love you!
Hermana Saunders

Short cuts to cambios

We had transfers this week! But nothing has changed for us. I will be staying with Hermana Dominguez. I am happy.
Well it was a great week with a lots of miracles. First off. We got LOST.
This sector so so small but there is a little forest area in the middle of it all so sometimes we have to walk a while to get around. Well the other day we got really sick of it and decided we were going to find a short cut.... bad idea. basically we barely got out before dark and had to run past a group of drunk men. It was a dumb idea. The Lord is teaching me patients.
BUT the same day we saw a bug miracle...
We told our district leader to fast for us- as a joke- because we haven't been finding progressing investigators. Well, he loves us so much that he really did it and you know what happened? We went to visit some old investigators that stopped progressing and they were begging us to come in and teach them. We taught the restoration and they deeply thanked us as we left. They said they had been waiting to hear it and that they FELT the spirit very strong that they hadn't felt before. It was the most incredible lesson I have had her in 18. We will see if it was enough to have them keep there commitments this week.
It has been very cold here and strangely without rain. We burned our heater into the wall by accident because we have been using it so much... Whoops. We will be calling the office elders about that today. 
I am loving 18 excited to meet the new Hermana that is coming to live with us. 
Have a great week!
Hermana Saunders

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Good bye President and Hermana Arrington

So it has been a great and an amazingly fast week. While we are still on the search, we have had a little more luck ;) Heavenly Father sure takes his time but the blessings always come.

We had a really amazing conference on Friday where we said goodbye to President and Sister Arrington :( I have to say it came really 'full circle.'
Because it was one of my last conferences in the mission they made me and the others that are leaving in the next 2 cambios bare their testimony in front of the whole mission. I wanted to die. The funny thing is I have absolutely no shame in teaching angry evangelico preachers but something about speaking in front of other missionaries absolutely terrifies me. Some how the words came out and I sat down. The zone Linares sang a musical number that my first zone sang in my first zone conference. It was really beautiful. President gave his testimony and I cried the whole time. I love the mission so much. It was so awesome to see all my friends that are in far sectors. We had a really powerful moment when, after lunch, one missionary started to sing 'the spirit of God' and than we all came in. I am going to miss the Arringtons so much.

We had a mini-cambio with Frutillares this week and it made me really sad that I am not traninng anymore. I want more hijas. Oh well it was good to see the one I have this week in the conference. She is still killing it in Linares. I am so proud of her.
Well those are the highlights of the week.
Love ya!
Hermana Saunders 

Monday, June 20, 2016

The Battle is Real

Sorry my letter last week was so lame. I was a little distracted but I took better notes to give you an update on other fun events that happened this week.

I got bite by a Dog! not to worry. He bit my boot and hardly even made a scratch but It has put new fear into me and my companion... I am starting to think that Satan travels in the form of a German Shepard. 

We had zone conference. Usually president comes but he is busy tying everything up for the new President to come in a week so we and the zone leaders set everything up. Me and my comp taught a class about Boldness. We used the examples of Peter and Moses and how knowing WHO they were helped them to be bold and successful in bringing people unto Christ. 

We had two ward activities that went really well. They love to feed us here. I really have no faith in the diet I started.

In the ward the sacrament is the last hours so everyone come really late to the classes. Everyone was like- don't fight it Hermanas This is just how we are... NO that is definitely Satan talking. So we have started the war to get people to come on time- starting with handing out candy to all that were punctual. 

I am really sad to say the work has been going really slow. I know we are giving it our all but it is really clear that Satan is too. We know that the miracles are waiting just around the corner. Like the always say the Darkest part of the night passes just before the sun comes up ;)

Something that all of this is teaching me is that we need to continue to be reliant  on the Lord, even if all we can see is one step in front of us. despite it all we are so happy. I know that this work it divine and that all comes in His time. 
Just remember this week that God really does take care of his children.

Hermana Saunders
Mini Cambios

Dogs at church


Well we went to work hard this week. We as newbies in the sector we have been learning the sector a little more together- it is sort of a rule we have to just start knocking doors when we get lost. We are never in a certain place by 'accedent.'

I love Hermana Dominguez more and more everyday. She is hilarious and is a very hard worker. She sure is teaching me a lot. We have had lots of funny run-ins with animals this week. 

There is not so much to report, or much time but we have been on the search this week. Not having to much success in finding but lost of appointments for this coming week. We are working a lot on getting to know the members. 

Love you. Sorry this letter is so lame. 
Hermana Saunders

Monday, June 6, 2016

Children of Lucifer

This week has been wonderful. I love Hermana Dominguez. The few first days with a new comp are always a little awkward but it turns out we are really similar and we get a long great. I have been so blessed with my companions.
We had some interesting experiences this week. Being the first week of the transfer we had Hermana Dominguez's leadership training and mission council so we went to Concepcion twice and got really lost on the way coming home (we went to a town called Dichato... it's beautiful). 

We also had a really interesting run in with an evangelico family (I think it Evangelical in English..?) To give you a picture the women all have long hair and wear floor length skirts. They take the bible really literally... They were very friendly but told us we were basically children of Lucifer because we are women trying to teach the word of God and have dominion over men. Oh and because we cut our hair and wear make up... The father gave the opening prayer and blessed us that we would never go into prostitution and all the family was chanting 'amen. si señor. amen' It was kinda scary and really hard not to keep from laughing. It was a very sweet of them to pray for us. They listened as we shared Moroni 10:3-5 and agreed that answers come from the spirit but then began to contradict themselves and say the only real answers and truth came from the Bible and the Book of Mormon wasn't the word of God. There was no fighting with them. We bore our testimonies and invited them to pray about it. They wouldn't let us say the closing prayer because the Father doesn't allow other people (especially women) to pray in his house because he was scared they will bring in a demon. It was an experience I won't forget soon.

We have been fasting and praying to find new people and we know the miracles are right around the corner. Even though it hasn't been that successful recently the blessings are definitely present.
I sure do love you guys!
Hermana Saunders

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Truly good and without guile

Tomé. I finally feel at home here. I really am growing to love the ward and the sector. It is so small I already feel like I have knocked every door but everyday we are finding new people.
We had cambios today- Hermana Gonzalez is leaving me:( She has been such an incredible companion. I really feel so close to her. She has taught me so much in these six weeks. I will be very sad to see her go. But we will continue to see each other in the office on Mondays. 
My new companion is Hermana Domingez from Mexico! I am pumped. I have heard she is a great missionary and I am thrilled she can keep helping me polish up my Spanish (I am realizing I speak a lot more 'Chilean' than Spanish.)

I have to admit that I have just felt like I needed to be the best. The best example, with the best numbers the most organized with the teaching skills. Well this week when I over heard the other Hermanas had higher numbers than us this week I felt frustrated. I was like ''Ugh- they both have less than 6 months in the mission and we are in the same sector! We are working just as hard and we have more experience. How can this be?'' I find that the Lord is really working on shrinking me pride. I was reading the conference from last April and a talk that is called 'truly good and without guile' by Elder Ringwood. I highly recommend it. I was really touched by it. I realized my motivation has been in the wrong place lately. I am glad God keeps reminding me of that. Needless to say I don't feel so frustrated any more. I am really excited to keep working hard- for the right reasons. 
I had some really close friends from the mission finish today. They will head home this Wednesday. Seeing some of my best examples from the mission head home reminded me of how they served even when they thought I wasn't watching.
I want to be truly good- even when only God is watching. 
I love you!
Hermana Saunders

One of my old investigators got baptized this week with Hermana Rigby!!!! oh I am so so happy. She comes from a really tough family life- Her husband is a total loser but she is incredible and it was so amazing that we found her. Lots of miracles

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Silver Lining

Well the slowness of last week definitely hasn’t lingered. We had a busy week with our last interviews with President Arrington and the news conference.
Our interviews were so spiritual! I can not explain how much I am going to miss President and Sister Arrington, I love them so much! President shared his testimony with everyone of us and expressed his love and gratitude for our service- basically all of the Hermanas came out crying and most of the Elders too. He has helped me conquer so many Goliaths in my life. I am forever changed by their influence. 

With the news conference we got to go on a mini cambio with new sisters from around the mission. I was will Hermana Hansaker, from Heber. She is such a sweety. We had a great day… even though all of our plans fell through- just a normal day. She is being trainned by one of my old comps.

We are finally seeing a few people progress in our sector- I don’t want to ginx it so I’ll let you know more about them next week, but lets just say the Lord has been blessing us with lots of miracles- we completed almost all of our weekly goals last week and we most cried with joy- it has been a long time since we have been able to do that. 

WOW I love my comp so much. We are so unified. I am hoping and praying she doesn't get transferred this next week but the odds aren't exactly in our favor. I don't know how she will ever be replaced.

I love you all and I am so grateful for this gospel and for the opportunity I have to know that families can be forever through priesthood power.
Be Good. Love you
Hermana Saunders

Monday, May 16, 2016

Tea Party

Well it has been a long week. Good, but long. We continue to find many to teach, but it has been a little difficult helping people progress to being more that 'news' Despite the frustration we are enjoying ourselves. That has been something Hermana Gonzalez has been working on- not stressing. I am loving getting to know the ward here. I feel like I have been so blessed with the sectors I have been in. There are so many examples. They are all so willing to chip in and work hard with us.

We did see a little miracle this week when we found someone on Saturday and they came to church with us yesterday. That doesn't happen very often. Her name is Eva. We hope to get to teach her again this week, she is a sweety.

Today we had a 'Tea Party' with the Hermanas in our zone in President and Hermana Arrington's apartment. Hermana Gonzalez and I prepared a small class about spiritual gifts and a talk from the November conference from Elder Nelson. I highly recommend it. We had the girls search the house for puzzle pieces with scriptures. It was a lot of fun. 

Not much else to report. Love you!
Hermana Saunders

Monday, May 9, 2016

Happy Mother's day

Good week. I was so happy to see the family.
Not much happened. We continue to look for more people to teach. We had another mini cambio this week with Frutillares and I got to go with my 'hermanita' who was also trained by Hermana Ormeño and my old comp Hermana Ovando. It was really fun to talk with her. We had a little miracle. Our investigators weren't answering the door when we had planned to visit them with a member so we panicked a little. Said a pray and started knocking some doors. We got a phone call from someone that lived around the corner who wanted us to come by and teach them English! It was a young girl who had let the missionaries come by to use the bathroom one day and they had left their number just in case she ever wanted help with Her English. It was a real answer to our prayers. 

Here are some photos of the view from our house and me with my comp.
Les amo!
Hermana Saunders

Monday, May 2, 2016

Mini Cambios

Great week! It was a wet one, it rained most days but it was fun breaking out the rain boots again.

I went on my first 'mini-cambio' this week with Hermana Calderon from Peru. The last time we were in the same zone was a year ago when we were 'born' into the mission. She will complete 9 months in this sector at the end of this cambio. She is breaking records. I expected to find her completely sick of the area. Hermana Gonzalaz told me that she hasn't really opened up to a lot of Hermanas about her feelings and wished me good luck as I left with her after district class. Big headed me thinking- I am going to crack this Hermana, so I can be one of those 'cool' sister leaders and she will tell me what's up. Well every day I am learning I am a bigger idiot. She taught me so much. It was such a fun day. We talked about how she felt staying there so long and she was like- Everyone thinks I am dying inside or something for being here so long but the truth is I just want to do what Jesus did and love the people and do what God would have me do, there is more for me to do here. I was really humbled by her attitude.

We have been really focusing on finding this week and were blessed to meet a lot of new people. Unfortunately they all 'died' before the weekend but it has been a real blessing and faith builder to know that God answers our prayers and that he didn't let our numbers drop even though we don't really have anyone to teach. 
Love you!
Hope you have a great week and I will see some of you on Sunday ;)
Hermana Saunders

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

New Assignment- Sister Training Leader

Leaving Linares

New Leaders

Sister Training Leaders

Finding a new dream

 Leaving Linares was so HARD! Wow I am going to miss everyone so so much. I made some life long friends in that little corner of Heaven. But it is like Flynn Rider says in Tangled- The fun part is finding a new dream. Good thing my new comp is a princess fanatic as well.
       Tomé is the most beautiful sector of the mission! Wow it has been a warm welcome here! (okay it has been FREEZING with sheets of rain but the people: quality- kept warm by their hearts) The ward is very strong and supportive here. It is awesome. The view from our house is incredible. We are on a big hill over looking the ocean and all of central Tomé. (I will send pics next week)
      It has been a pretty tiring week. We knocked doors and got a little wet but it has been a lot of fun getting to know the sector as well as the hermanas that live with us and the ones that are in our zone.
      We had two meetings in the office this week, first leadership training for me and after that we spent all of Friday morning in mission council, talking about the state and goals we have for the mission. It was really fun to see some old friends who were also made leaders this cambio.
Les Amo!
Hermana Saunders

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

April Showers Bring.. cambios‏

Well winter has hit us hard here this week. Rain just about every day. I am loving it but it is definitely taking a little bit more time to get dressed when we head out (2 layers of socks plus 3 jackets ;)
It was a wonderful week full for lots of spiritual moments, Claudia the new convert came with us to visit Diego's family and it was one of the best lessons they have had. They are making break throughs. Hector Diego and Natalia went to the temple for the first time to do baptisms for the death. On Sunday they both gave their testimonies in a Home Evening we had about service. It was one of the most rewarding moments of my mission. We followed their testimonies with the song ''because I have been given much' which was the song that helped me deiced to serve a mission. It was a really tender moment.

Well we have cambios this week. It is my time to wake up from this dream sector and head out. I will be going to Tomé to be with Hermana Gonzales from Colombia. I will be an Herman training leader in a sector called 18 of September (my lucky number;). In my first cambio I went on a mini cambio to the same sector. I am so excited. I don't know how I am going to leave Linares but I am looking forward to the new adventure. 
Hermana Long is coming here to be with Hermana Rigby to finish her training. I couldn't be more relived. She is such a good missionary. She will be in good hands. 

Thanks for all of your love and prayers sent my way.
Hermana Saunders

Diego at the temple,

Goodbye (for now) Linares!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Pray it isn't my last week in the City of Dreams

So some fun updates about the week:

We taught the Hooky-pokey to our English class. They are really coming along well.

I had a mini cambio with my CCM companion, Hermana Graham. It was such a fun day. I love her so much!

So we had these two incredible investigators when I first got here: Claudia and Fernando. After a lot of pray we determined to stop teaching them because they had stopped to progress as we had hoped. The Elders started teaching them and they were baptized this week. I love them so much and I am so happy for them, but I have to admit, I was feeling just a little bummed that I couldn't be the one to help them get baptized. I put a lot of work in and I know, it was really prideful thought, but I was like 'why can't I pick the fruits for my labors?' I prayed to be humbled. I knew I was in the wrong, thinking like that.
With this in mind we went to an appointment with our recent convert, Hector. He bore such a strong testimony about the priesthood and on Sunday he got to bless the sacrament for the first time. It

made me so happy. I realized if we hadn't dropped Claudia and Fernando at the time we did we never would have had time to find Hector. I was knew the Lord had answered my prayers.
In reality, I was the most blessed there because I got to know and love all three of them. And each one has touched my heart and changed me with their testimonies. The Elders had really helped them progress from where they were, and I know it was the plan God had in mind. It was an important lesson to learn for me that really anything that we ever do as missionaries is only because the Lord is so loving that he let's us do it. 

I am so grateful for the lessons I have learned here in Linares. Next week we have cambios again! Fingers crossed I get one more here in the sector of dreams!

Hermana Saunders

Monday, April 4, 2016

General Conference Week

Good week. Lots of walking and looking without luck but we ended up getting some good references for this next week. ya! 

So how was conference? Did you tune in? Well if not you missed out. It was basically incredible.
(My personal favorite part was the women's conference.)

I always like to come with questions to the conference. I went a little over board and wrote down 15, knowing that I probably would not get them all answered. My miracle- within the first session, 10 had been answered. Then followed the final 5 through the other sessions. My mind was blown. I know that the Spirit is real and through him we can become the people God wants us to be. I know the Lord wants to bless us with personal revelation and we will have the opportunity to receive it when we listen and come prepared. I invite you to see it if you haven't (ALL of it) and review it if you have.

We have a good new pool of investigators that we are working with right now. Progressing slowly but we are really happy to see they are moving a little just a little closer to baptism. We had a few join us for Conference and they all said the really enjoyed it. I am anxious to hear more of their thoughts as we visit them this week. ( I wish more would have heard Elder Beadnar's talk)

Normally we would have cambios this week but due to some changes in the MTC training we will be staying but for 2 more weeks. (2 more weeks in the sector of dreams- yes please!)

Hermana Saunders

Happy most important day in the history of the world‏

It has been such a great week! I love Easter. It has been so fun remembering the most important event in history and getting to share it with people all day. I love the new video the church came out with. It's pretty incredible.

On Friday night we had an activity, it was a really spiritual experience for me. We got to sing a musical number and participate in the branch choir. Few people came but I felt like we were the lucky ones. Talked about the week leading up to Christ's death and it was really amazing. It made me think back to a family home evening we had we I was 12 and my Dad explained the significance of the Final week of Christ's life. 

They talked about how everything that happened was prophesied of before the coming of Christ. His birth death and Resurrection. Our District leader spoke to us about how our Patriarical blessings are like the prophecies of OUR lives. All we can accomplish is scripted but is up to us to follow our savior's example and be obedient enough to fulfill with the blessings that can be ours. 

The invitation I have is that you can all re-read your Patriarical Blessings this week and look to find ways to fulfill with the prophesies that have been made for you.
AND to prepare a good questions for conference so that you can be looking for some spiritual guidance.

Que éste excelente
Hermana Saunders

Monday, March 14, 2016

Keep on, keepin on... and keepin the commandments‏

Another wonderful week in paradise. I expected to get sick of this sector from being here so long but I just love it more. The weeks of this cambio have been flying by. 

We had a 'Tesch' class in Parral and I got to see cute Sister Black. missin that girl. The Teschs are the married missionaries in our sector. They are traveling the mission to teach everyone effective teaching methods, more about our call etc. They are incredible. I always learn a ton. We had a family home evening with them yesterday about premortal life and my mind was blown (can you say 'trunky' for the temple or what?)

Yesterday we had a district conference and we got to here from some general authorities through a broadcast, including Elder Nelson. He speaks Spanish! It was really fully. He has quite the gringo accent but it was a really neat talk about an experience he had when the wing of a small plane he was is exploded and he thought he was going to die. He talked about not having regrets so that when the moment comes of our death we can be at peace. I thought it was really interesting.

*other funny side note from yesterday- a dog followed us all the way to church and then went back to get the other Hermanas. It had a broken leg and limped on three legs all the way. It waited for us the whole meeting. Sometimes I think these dogs are smarter than the humans here- they know they need to go to church. It was bummed when we shut the gate and couldn't come in.

We found a lot this week but we are battling with our investigators to come to church. The cold is starting to set in, in the mornings. yikes. But we continue to search for progressing investigators. (como siempre)

Hermana Rigby continues to amaze me. She is the best.

Hey the new Easter video came out! 
I want to challenge you guys to share it!

Love you guys! 
Hermana Saunders

Monday, March 7, 2016

March 7, 2016

Okay this week has flow by! I was really nervous that training would make the weeks longer but that definitely is not the case. I am however tired. I have never been so tired and happy. I am pretty sure my companion thinks I am a freak but I think she is enjoying herself. I am so proud of her. She is just so energized to preach the gospel. She is really teaching me. This week she did a street contact all by herself. I didn't have to say anything. She is so eager to speak and participate in the lessons. The whole branch is really impressed by her. I am such a proud mom.

We have continued to look and find this week and while we didn't have anyone with fecha in church, we have a lot of hope for this week. We have found a lot in the last two weeks and I we will be extending baptism again this week to everyone.

I love Linares. It has been a blast to be in another gringa house. We pulled a little prank on the newbies and told them we nap instead of plan on Sundays. We crawled into bed and the were all scared running around like: 'our trainers are tweca!' but we all had a good laugh about it and got up and went planning. So gullible.

We had a conference in Chillan on Thursday and I got to see Hermana Ovando and Hermana Black again. Trio reunited. We talked about the conference in January: Preach repentance and baptize converts and Elder Bednars discussion with the Area about teaching as well. We have made the goal to focus in and talk more about repentance in our teachings.

A mistake that we make as missionaries sometimes is that we focus how repentance is a step we make to get to baptism. But really repentance is a step that we use to get to eternal life. It is something that needs to be applied daily and consistently over a long period of time to reach our ultimate goal of perfection. I testify of the healing power of Christ's atonement. He has paid the price. What he asks of us is humble heart, willing to make changes and repent according to his will. I know we can be clean again through him.

I love you guys so much. Have a wonderful week!
Que les vaya bien!
Hermana Saunders

Monday, February 29, 2016

Claudio's baptism 2/28/16

So this week has been a long one. A really great one, but I am ready for my P-day nap. Tuesday we took a bus to Concepción and had a presentation about training and being an example for the new missionaries coming. We ate pizza (totally worth the 4 hour bus ride) and then they assigned us our new companions.
People have always told me training was tiring but now I get why. But I am SO impressed by my cute hija. Her name is Hermana Rigby and she is from Idaho. Her Spanish is so good! She still has some things to learn but she is so eager to help out in the lessons and contacts. It makes me a proud mom. 

It has been really helpful for me to review all the basic teaching skills with her. I am learning a lot.

So Claudio's baptism went really well this week. we ended up doing it Sunday at 9 before church and a lot of people came to support him. I was so proud that he finally was brave enough to follow his heart and the will of his Father. 

We have been finding but we are still looking for those golden prepared ones.

Here are some pics from Claudio's baptism. I promise to be better about sending more.

I hope you are all doing great. Love ya!
Que este bien!
Hermana Saunders 

hector's baptism and Hermana Black

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

La Caida de Adán y Eva... y Hermana Saunders‏

Eventful week. We ran around like crazy and the fruits of our labor actually came when we reached our goals this week!

Tuesday after English class we were running home when I fell flat on my face! yikes. defiantly left a bit of skin on the pavement there. The drunk man across the street was just the funniest part. Yelling at me to be calm and not run. It made one of my top 5 embarrassing moments for sure. It has been a bit of a bummer that I cant kneel in prayer because my knees are nice and scraped up.

We had a branch activity- it went pretty well despite the fact that not a lot of people came. It was a friendship activity and we had a show and a water war put on by the youth. they did a really good job.

So Saturday Hector was baptized! It was a really great day. We are so happy for him. I feel so blessed to be able to see him through the whole proses from contact to the font. I am really excited as well because I get to keep teaching him. That is right folks i am staying another 8 weeks in Linares the best sector del mundo! and.... I will be training. Pray i don't mess up a newbie. My comp is also leaving to go finish a training and Hermana Briggs who lives with me will also be coming to the office with me tomorrow to pick up a newbie. We are pretty excited. we are already planning the pranks :)
no just kidding mom I'll take good care of her.

We had a really good lesson with Claudio this week. He was feeling a little discouraged but he is right on track for his bautismo this Friday.

I love you guys. I have never been happier. Thank you for all of your love and prayers sent my way!
Que les vaya bien!
Hermana Saunders

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Amazing people, Amazing sector, Amazing Life‏

So this week was incredible. It flew by. We had two amazing lessons with Hector this week. I know I talk about him too much but he has absolutely blown my mind. He told us this week that he is getting really excited for his baptism. We taught him about the real commit of baptism and the promises we make with God. We were all just about in tears at the end. I have never seen anyone more prepared in such a short amount of time. I feel so so so blessed to get the chance to know and teach him.
Disaster struck on Wednesday when he sent us a text and said he needed to talk with us. Of course we thought the worst and started freaking out. His phone was out of range so it was impossible to communicate with him. The Elders saw him kiss his girlfriend that day and we thought it must be something with her- 
We called him the next day and he told us she had broken up with him. He was super sad. But he said that just as he was walking away he prayed to God for a sign that he was there and that he cared and the Elders magically turned the corner. He took that as his sign. He was like- Wow that was fast.

Pray for him that all will be prepared for his baptism on Saturday!

We are teaching another boy named Claudio. We had a really great lesson with him this week where he told us he realized that we was ready to be baptized (After almost a year of meeting the missionaries) We feel super blessed he finally has come to recognize the spirit responding to his prayers. It was a really light to me that other people that I have taught and not progressed, still have hope for the future. He is preparing to be baptized on the 27th.

Cambios are next week and I have to say I am pretty sad. It is likely I will leave because I have the most time here but I am really really hoping I might get to stay just one cambio more. This really is the sector of my dreams. It is funny and sad how when you really come to love things, it it time to go. Whatever happens, I have never been happier serving the Lord and I can not wait to see what the future holds in store. 

Que les vaya bien!
Hermana Saunders

PS I completed a year this week in the mission... Disappointed but relieved face

Monday, February 8, 2016

The dream investigator......

No time to write but I want to tell y'all about some cool things that happened with Hector this week:

So we taught him the law of Chastity this week (dunn-dun-duwn) and he told us about his girlfriend 
(Disappointed but relieved face) but to our pleasant surprise he told us he had been sharing the gospel with her! He told us this was really the most important thing in this life right now and that if she wouldn't accept the gospel it was a sign from God that he maybe shouldn't be with her (Person raising both hands in celebration
We are hopefully going to be able to meet her this week. 

Something else cool is that we did a 'testimony circle' Where we all went around in a YSL home evening with Hector and we all said one gospel principle that we had a testimony of. example: I know that God lives/I know we can get blessings from paying our tithing etc. so we went around the circle 3 times and all said one simple sentence about our testimony when it came to Hector's turn he said: I know I have found the truth. We were through the roof happy. I have a lot of faith his fecha will hold for the 20th. Keep him in your prayers please!

The invitation I have this week. Take life one day at a time. Before we can endure to the END we got to finish today. Keep on perseverando.

Hermana Saunders