Monday, July 20, 2015


July 20, 2015

HAHA looks like God loves the Bartholomew and Dominguez families!!!  SO on Tuesday last week, I knew that new missionaries were coming, and that one of them would be Hermana Dominguez (from Draper).  Thinking that I wouldn’t get the chance to meet her in person, I asked one of the Hermanas from this area, who was going to Guayaquil to pick up her new trainee missionary, to take a mosquito killing essence with her and give it to Hermana Dominguez so she wouldn’t die from mosquitos the first night here in Ecuador like I did.

Well, it turns out that WE LIVE TOGETHER!!! Yup. Hermana Dominquez was assigned to Buena Fe as the first area of her mission, and we live in the same apartment.  (Thanks for sending the hug mom!) ;)  Hna Dominguez basically knows everything about my family, me included!  AND she is adorable and is already an INCREDIBLE missionary.  I was talking with the President Riggins and he agrees with me! 

Hermana Melissa Dominguez
Don't know if I ever explained this to you all, but en los pueblitos they peel oranges, when they aren't orange (not ripe) just enough so that the white skin is still there, and then you cut a hole in the top and squeeze the wonderfully delicious juice right into your mouth.  You look awkward while eating it, but it is amazing! 

Funny story, Hermana Dominguez and her companion got locked in their study room today for almost an hour, while Hna Rebolledo and I tried to take the doorknob off and rescue them.  HAHA, it was classic.  Also mi nieta [my granddaughter – the new Hermana Hna. Vilchez is training] came ALL the way from the States and es PILAS en su Español [she is wonderful with her Spanish].  Well, it turns out from the new missionaries that came in, 10 of them were sisters and with luck, 5 of them came here to QUEVEDO!!  WOOT! WOOT!  I love working with the new missionaries and the ENERGY they have to work. 

Los 4 Hermanas de Buena Fe

Things are just dandy here in good ol´ Buena Fe.  Robinson esta SUPER animado por su bautismo. (sorry I just realized that was in Spanish aaaah.)  [Robinson is super excited for his baptism.] He is determined to change his life for good.  His biological mom is coming all the way from Quito to support him in his decision to be baptized, so it is going to be a great day! 

Yesterday morning, Fernando told us that he wasn’t going to go to church anymore and that he will return all the folletos [pamphlets] and books that we have given him. :(  This absolutely crushed our hearts, but we know that in a few months he will either get married or stop breaking the law of chastity so he can get baptized.  

Ok, so we are short on time today BUT I have a quick story for you all.  On Tuesday, while eating our lunch at Issela´s Diner (she is a less-active member), we saw this guy named Marcos that is always there to help her wash dishes while he is waiting for another bus to come so he can sell pan de yuca to the passengers.  In my 5 months here we have invited him a million and two times to come to church and he has always said, “Hermanas, one day you will just see me show up to church…and the first time that I go it won’t be the last.” 

So on Tuesday, we were able to finally teach him.  He ended up missing his bus, but the gospel is important right?  ;)  He is a great salesman, so we told him that one day he could “sell the gospel”.  Which he said he would never do because once he HAS the gospel, he would never give it away, but that he WOULD share it with others while also keeping it for himself. :) At that point, the Spirit prompted us to read a scripture that truly knocked his socks off. We read from Section 39 of the DyC, and as he began reading…

Y ahora bien, he aquí, te digo, mi siervo James (we inserted his name MARCOS for James), he observado tus obras y te conozco.  [And now, behold, I say unto you, my servant James, I have looked upon thy works and I know thee.]  After he read this part, he paused and then looked up at us with tears in his eyes and asked us why we wanted him to read this.  We encourged him to keep reading...

Y de cierto te digo, tu corazón es recto delante de mí ahora; y he aquí, he conferido grandes bendiciones sobre tu cabeza; [And verily I say unto thee, thine heart is now right before me at this time; and, behold, I have bestowed great blessings upon thy head;]

No obstante, has conocido mucha tristeza, porque me has rechazado muchas veces a causa del orgullo y de los afanes del mundo. [Nevertheless, thou hast seen great sorrow, for thou hast rejected me many times because of pride and the cares of the world.] Again he just looked up at us and said in amazement, “It’s like God is talking to me.” 

Pero he aquí, los días de tu liberación han llegado, si escuchas mi voz que te dice: Levántate y bautízate, y lava tus pecados, invocando mi nombre, y recibirás mi Espíritu y una bendición mayor que cualquiera que hayas conocido. [But, behold, the days of thy deliverance are come, if thou wilt hearken to my voice, which saith unto thee: Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on my name, and you shall receive my Spirit, and a blessing so great as you never have known.]

Y si haces esto, te he preparado para una obra mayor. [And if thou do this, I have prepared thee for a greater work.] Marcos then said, “HOW IN THE WORLD? We were talking before about how I would be a good missionary?!”

Predicarás la plenitud de mi evangelio que he enviado en estos últimos días, el convenio que he enviado pararecobrar a los de mi pueblo, que son de la casa de Israel. [Thou shalt preach the fulness of my gospel, which I have sent forth in these last days, the covenant which I have sent forth to recover my people, which are of the house of Israel.]

I had never seen someone read the scriptures so SLOWLY, and truly absorb ALL that the verses had to say, as Marcos did that day. He looked up at said, Issela will you go to church with me on Sunday?! And I am happy to report that when I got up to give my talk in Sacrament Meeting yesterday, Marcos quietly walked in the back doors. I almost gave him a shout-out in the middle of my talk, but I wanted to keep the reverence that was there or else I totally would have done it!
The scriptures are written for US!! Apply them to your life and you will know how to have eternal life. 

I LOVE YOU all and hope you have a wonderful week!
Hermana B

Exploring on P-day with Hermana Rebolledo

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