Monday, May 31, 2010

Remnants of a Package


First of all I just have to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM! You are way old now! haha jk I hope that my mom receives a lot of calls now and salutations since I told you all! (June 1st is the day...) Well yesterday was mother’s day here, wouldn't it have been cool if we got to call home for both? I thought so, but the Pres. didn't....oh well. Well of course I was thinking of my mom, she is just amazing right? Well also we have this investigator right now and her name is Miguelina. She is probably about 65 and she is the sweetest thing! She has a baptismal date. We set it with her and she stopped smoking! Well we went over there on Saturday and I wanted to cry because she was so stressed and upset. All of her kids live with her and they are going nowhere in life. Her one daughter, Grace, is so addicted to drugs, so her kids have problems and she just leaves them all the time for Miguelina to take care of. Well Grace's little boy, who is 2, was really sick and had a fever and everything. Grace left Friday morning, and didn’t come back until Saturday afternoon, and Miguelina then told her that he was sick so she hurried and left again! Miguelina was at the point of tears and she just told us she couldn't wait until church the next day because she could leave the house and not have to deal with anyone and she could be alone! She also said that Mothers Day is her least favorite day of the year because her kids always try to treat her nice just because of the day, and they don’t show her love or respect any other day. She thinks that she is a horrible mother because all of her kids but one is bad... (Her words...) It was so depressing! I just wanted to go buy her chocolates and flowers and tell her how wonderful she is. Well she was late to Church because Grace didn't get home until the morning and she was probably on something. But I just wanted to say that I am so grateful that I didn't grow up in a home or and environment like that! Poor Miguelina and poor grandchildren, at least THEY have her.. I don’t know where they would be if she didn't take care of them.. I'm glad I had standards and the church in my life when I was growing up. Really, what a blessing! I also have to share a story with you...So remember Hermana Vasquez? Well she was my kinda comp in the CCM here, and we got really close. Well I had this really strong feeling to send her a package with some things that I knew would be really special to her, things that we had talked about that were some of her dreams. None of this would have been possible without my mom; she sent me the things from the US. Well a couple Downeast shirts because they don’t have anything good here, and her dream is to see the Christus in Salt Lake, well I couldn’t help with that much, but mom sent me a mini statue. So I sent her this package with a few other things. And It was a long time ago that I sent it..I was starting to get nervous because she emails me every week but she never got it? Well last week she didn't email, and I didn’t know why, but today I got an email from her that said she's was sorry she didn't email but she has been having the hardest time of her life. One of her brothers died (he lived in Florida and she didn't know him that well.. but still) and she just wanted to go home and she cant focus and she cant pay attention to anything, she is taking it really hard. Well randomly on Sunday during church someone brings my package to her... and she said that it was exactly what she needed at that time. The Christus statue reminded her of all the things Christ did for us, and that he knows our pains and he can take them away and he is always there welcoming us into His arms! I know that I had that inspiration to send her those things because God knew that she would need that reminder at this time in her life! I know that she didn't receive it for so long because it wasn’t time yet! I am so thankful for her and love her so much! I love this gospel and the Love that Christ has for all of us, we are never left alone!
Love you All!
Hermana Reay
ps we moved this last week, it was a hassle and my companion was robbed so her scriptures are gone! Its been terrible, but guess what!? NO COCKROACHES!!! And the new house is right in front of the church! It is wonderful!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Santo Domingo is HOT!!

Hello All!
Santo Domingo is HOT!! And it is getting hotter! I didn’t know that my body could produce so much sweat, it’s disgusting! But they say you adapt to it???? We’ll have to see! I don’t have much time this week, but I want to tell you 3 highlights! companion killed a cockroach that was living in my shoe, and I hid in the corner while she did it, then I thought to myself ¨wow you need to grow up and get used to this place¨ so I told her that the next time we saw a cockroach I had to kill it and she couldn’t help me! So we come back for lunch to the apartment and guess what? There were 2 HUGE ones blocking the way into the kitchen and she looked at them and said, I’m not helping you¨ ahhhhhhhh but guess what? I killed them both! I took the broom and just wacked the floor until they were both dead! One of them was in pieces because I hit it too much! haha but I did it! And now I can do it for myself!
The second thing...I got to see my uncle Doug!!! I got permission from the President and he took my companion and I out to Lunch! We went to this really nice restaurant right on the beach and had Mofongo, which is a Dominican Dish, and actually REALLY good. Its like plantains mashed with a bunch of stuff in it, but anyway its really good, it was so good to see him and talk about things back home, apparently spring doesn’t want to come this year, and who knows about summer! But don’t worry; I am enjoying both for you all here!
The last thing is that we started teaching Isabel. She is totally ready to be baptized and has been taught a lot of lessons before us, but guess who she is a reference from? Yeah Elder Bednar!!! When he was here she cooked for him and a lot of big wigs in the church so she met them all. She learned about the church inside out and has such a strong testimony; she just needs to get married so we are waiting on that! It is really fun to see when people find the truth and they change their lives for the better!
I love this gospel and am so grateful that I can share it with the people here in SPANISH! I love you all!
Hermana Reay

Monday, May 17, 2010

First of all I just want to apologize at my lack of pictures! I promise that I will try to send some soon! I am not being really good at that! (I got pictured out from my trip to Russia, Its not fun coming home and having more than 30GB of me)
Well you might not recognize me anyway; I think that when I get home, I will look like a prune! It rains here EVERY day! and my feet are constantly wet; thank goodness I have such wonderful parents that sent me some chaco sandals! They are the best! When it rains, the humidity I'm pretty sure is at 200%, but you would all love this place, I took some pictures of the sunrise the other day, and you would just think that I am in an island paradise all the time! haha
Well I was transferred! It’s so weird, because I still like in the same house with Hermana White, but she has a different companion. Her companion is a mini missionary and none other than Hermana Antivilo (the mission Presidents daughter.... its fine with me though because now we are even more spoiled, on Sunday they brought us lasagna and pumpkin pie for dinner!!!) My companion is Hermana Fuentes, if I could pick one word to describe her it would be Spiritual. She can bring the spirit in a lesson SOOO quickly. And she starts to talk really slow and really quiet and sometimes the people are mesmerized! It’s really cool to be a part of. It is going to take some getting used to a new companion but I know that we will get along just fine. What is hard is our area. It is the hardest area in the East Mission because we are in the richest part. Some of the houses are huge and spread apart. But one advantage to that is that it is beautiful and there are so many trees, sometimes I feel like I'm in the jungle, the trees really have like vines and things hanging down, its like Tarzan. The people are less humble and receptive though, but we are working with our faith and we have been knocking on doors for the whole week. Neither of us knows the area so we are learning how to find addresses, and we are really working with the members. They are key...when you can get them excited about missionary work, they are really willing to help out and go out with you to teach and to give you references. For example we received a reference from a member. So we went to find Dayanna.... well she works in the Sheraton Hotel or something like that, in the Cigar Shop....haha...yeah the cigar shop. We taught the whole first lesson sitting in there, but surprisingly the spirit was really strong and she is so sweet. We hope to find more investigators like her.
Right now our goal is to work with the Youth in our ward! It should be fun, send me some ideas if you have any!
Quick sad update, I am not in his area any more but Juan Pablo got cold feet AGAIN! They had to leave him because we are thinking that maybe the lack of the missionaries will make him realize what he really wants ...we have a family home evening with his whole family tonight, so we'll see what happens. Keep him in your prayers!
Can I just say I love you all? My mom tells me about all the people that comment to her about keeping up with me and Weston...I want to send a quick shout out to the Hawks family! You guys are so sweet! Without your mom, my testimony wouldn’t be as strong as it is; Being in the Laurels with her was one of my favorite things I have ever done in the Church! I love you All!
Hermana Reay

Monday, May 10, 2010



Happy Mothers Day Yesterday!! Oh mom by the way, the mother’s day here is actually at the end of this month so I will have to see what they do! ??? Who knows, but I was thinking of asking the bishop and seeing if we can pass out flowers or something after sacrament meeting!
Well big news! My companion is going to be changing...I am really sad, but sure that I will love the new one, I will meet her tomorrow! Hermana White will still be in the same house as me, it will just be very weird not to be companions! It was SOOOOOO good to talk to family yesterday on the phone, it was almost as if I never left! It was so weird to hear about things going on in the world; I realize that even though I am living in it, I'm not really in it. But that is one of the best things about a mission, those things don’t even matter anymore and you just rely on the Lord, and focus on his work and the people that you are serving!
Speaking of whom we are serving...Juan Pablo is getting baptized this Saturday! I am so happy he is so ready, and his testimony is now so strong! In the process of helping him to gain his own testimony we also taught his niece and she might get baptized with him as well! I love the work here in the Dominican Republic because we have so much; there isn't enough time to teach everyone that we want!
Yesterday (and today!) It rained SOOOOOO much! The streets flooded and it was like a river going down the street. We live 2 blocks from the ocean and inland is all uphill, so all of the water was rushing toward us as we were walking to our appointments! It actually was really fun! I didn't get any pictures because I didn't have my camera, but there were places where the water in the streets was up to my knees! The way that the weather is acting right now, the people say that we are in for some hurricanes and serious rainstorms this year. I'm ready though...I bought my 72 hour kit! :)
Well I don’t really know what else to say because it was a crazy week with all of the changes and things going on...(plus I just wrote on Wednesday!) So I promise next week will be better! Thank you all so much for your support, my mom told me that there are a lot of people always checking up on Weston and me! That means a lot, I love you all!
Hermana Reay

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Hey all!
This is my last Pday in this transfer!!! I can’t believe that it has already been 6 weeks! I hope that I stay here with Hermana White, but we’ll see! The more I think about it, the happier I am about starting my mission here in Gazcue, all of the other missionaries come here for their Pdays and so I know that I will be able to come back and visit some of the people. I love them all and we are getting so close. I am starting to open up more (not that I didn’t want to before, but now I can with my mad Spanish skills hehe jk) So its great! I love Gazcue! Especially because I haven’t had any run ins with cockroaches this week...things are looking up! :)
So funny story, we were walking on the Conde (which is the main tourist street) we ALWAYS get at least 10 people that yell out something to us...its usually annoying, but the other day, this guy was like Elderas??? (Because here the Elders are Elderes, so they just made it feminine...) It was hilarious, and then we turned around, and he was like "I didn’t know that there were women in your church” So we told him all about the church and hopefully he’ll become a really good investigator...His name is Ariel. Its great because sometimes, as Hermana´s, we really can talk to people that probably wouldn’t just talk to the Elders, and even if it starts off as there are just talking to us because we are American Women, we can change the conversation around and it can turn into a really good contact! I love meeting new people.
Something really special happened over the weekend. One of the daughters from a member family was baptized. And they invited us to come. So we went and it was the sweetest thing, because the whole Primary put it on! All of the talks were given by kids, and the musical number, and 4 kids bore their testimonies! It was so sweet because I really get more out of what they say because you really know that it is coming from their heart! And they all used scriptures and everything, they are SO smart; I was never like that when I was 8. I love the members here because they really make the gospel their life! They are all such an example to me!
News of Juan Pablo... So he just told us that he is SECURE with his baptismal date, he picked it (I Don’t remember if I already told you that) but he is getting baptized on the 15th! (So I really hope I stay here for next transfer) Not that I want to brag or anything, but it was great because He told us that I was one of the reasons he changed his mind because the stories I tell and the way that Hermana White and I teach together helps him to feel the spirit more than he ever has before! Even if he is the only person that will be baptized while I’m here, it will be worth it, I’ve made a difference in his life, and he’s made one in mine. Since he told us that, everything has been changing right in front of our eyes! He is going to be an amazing member!
Also I taught Sunday school on Sunday: all the investigators and new members! AHHHHHHH I was terrified! It was SOOO hard to teach in Spanish about the organization of the Church! Oh well, its over, and I think it was ok! :)
Well what’s on my mind right now are mother’s day! I can’t wait to be able to talk to my family! I miss them SOO much! It will definitely be a good boost!
I love you all and am so thankful for your support and the love of God in my life, I feel it and see it every day!
Love, Hermana Reay