Monday, September 27, 2010

I am STOKED for conference!

Hello all,
Can I just tell you I am STOKED for conference! I don’t know if I will be able to wait until Saturday! There are only 5 Americans in our Zone so we are going to have a party! haha, it will be fun, and I am still with Hermana Batty so we are going to have fun together, also Susan called me and told me that she is going to come to our building to watch it with us in English!
It is really hard to whitewash an area... there are a lot of empty spaces in our day and we don’t know the times the people are in their houses, and we don’t even have a map to know what the streets are. But can I tell you something great? We have 3 baptismal dates! I am so happy! A recent convert, Mercedes, her granddaughter lives with her, (Keysi) and she would never go to church before when the elders are here, or even listen to them. But we just invited her to sit in our lesson and to church and she really REALLY wants to be baptized now! She is so excited! Keysi is getting baptized on Saturday night after conference, and so is another little boy that has been going to church for 3 months, he is soooo excited too! We also starting teaching the niece of a member and she really wants to be baptized too, it really pays off to work with members! The people in this ward are great! Its really really big! The sad things though, are that there are about 600 members in this ward and over half of them are inactive! So we made it our goal to work with the inactives a lot and try to reactivate them! The hard part also though is that a big chunk (hehe to those of you that get it) of those people are Haitian and they don’t speak Spanish. Its hard, I want to talk to someone about setting up a branch or something in French because there are enough members that only speak it! Oh well we’ll work our hardest!
This area is still in the "city" but it is soooo different. I don’t even want to imagine what the country is like, because I have already seen some really sad things. There are a lot of shacks with tin roofs, and almost every child that I see is just running around naked with dirt all over them. It’s sad, and they don’t have showers and it’s just a hard life. I really look up to these people for ALWAYS living like this. We are so spoiled in the US.
Speaking of the US, its pretty funny because almost every Dominican thinks that the US consists of New York and that’s about it. They all think that I am from New York! haha it’s pretty funny! Well I am thinking of you all and I love you all! Pray for me!
Hermana Reay

Monday, September 20, 2010


Hello all,
I don’t have as much time this week because we are running late, so we have to cut down on our internet time! But wow!!! I am totally, I mean TOTALLY in a new area. It is so different to be out of the city. People actually live in houses here! And I can see the stars at night because there isn’t as much air pollution! But I already love it! My area is a lot smaller, and I swear half of the people are members! And the thing that I love the most is that they are all so willing to go out with the missionaries. They love us and they all want to go! We have whitewashed the area from Elders, so it has been funny to see the look on the people’s faces when Hermana´s show up at their door. We already have a baptismal date and we are going to set a couple more tonight. It has been wonderful! I love it when there are people that are just so ready to receive the gospel! Oh and the Elders that are in my old area called me and told me the Daniel is getting baptized on the 25th!!!! I was so happy! Really if I don’t baptize anyone else for the rest of my mission I am fine! Susan also wrote to me today and told me that the kids were confirmed, and Mario and Brian received the priesthood! They are so cute. I really don’t miss my old area at all.... (Sniffle...)
Ok my comp, Hermana Polanco. She is wonderful and always really happy, and chill about everything. Can I just say something though....she speaks SO FAST!!! I know that I am going to learn so much from her, and my understanding is definitely going to skyrocket! I am excited for that! She really wants to learn English too so we are helping each other! It will be really fun, we are going to work hard and dig into the work here in Mendoza!
Today was really fun; all of the missionaries that could, got together at a big park and played games! IT was soooo hot, I am totally sunburned, but there was soccer and football and we played Frisbee, and just had a good time! And I am sooooooooooo excited for conference! I cant believe that I am going to have my second conference here in the DR, it really shows me how fast time is passing and I just cant believe it, I am just going to try to enjoy every second and show as much love as I can for every person that I come in contact with! That really is my purpose here I decided because if they can see the love and feel it, the rest will fall into place! I love you all so much! You are the best!
Hermana Reay

Monday, September 13, 2010

I am leaving my home!

Well last night we received transfer calls. It was horrible. We are all being split up and I am leaving my home! I am going to an area called Mendoza. Don’t worry I am fine now and have accepted it because I know that it is what the Lord needs me to do. And I am going to have a Dominican companion. I have never met here before but her name is Hermana Polanko. I saw a picture and she looks really cute. My wonderful, wonderful companion is leaving me for La Romana, which is the farthest away they can send her, I am heartbroken about that, but I know that I will see her again, especially because she lives only 15 minutes away in Utah! Haha! They also whitewashed my area (because they took both of us out) and they are putting Elders in there.... I know I couldn’t believe it either, the city hasn’t had Elders in 3 years! But they will be great!
We definitely left the transfer with a bang! Mario, Yolanda and Brian were all baptized yesterday and it was absolutely amazing! If it wouldn’t have happened, it would be really hard to leave right now. The oldest brother, Patricio wasn’t baptized, but its ok, because he really isn’t ready yet. Also Daniel, our golden investigator, is going to be baptized in a couple of weeks! He asked us, and he is so ready, He came to stake conference and he loved it! I am really excited for the Elders to get in and work hard, and I am glad that we have some good people to leave them!
I already started to say goodbye to people and it was hard. Last week I told Ulda and Domingo that I might be leaving because I have so much time here, and Domingo told me that he wouldn’t go back to church if that happens. Then I shared with him some scriptures and told him that it isn’t the church of Hermana Reay of Latter Day Saints, and I think that he got the picture, so today when I told him, he was ready and he accepted it! Ulda had a really hard cry and it broke my heart but I know that they will be fine and I will be with them at their wedding and their baptism in spirit. They are such wonderful people, wonderful examples.
All wish me luck as I leave to say goodbye to the rest of my Dominican family, and endure some tears. I just pray that they all really know that they joined this, the true church, for Jesus Christ and to better themselves, and be truly happy, and that the absence of the American Hermana’s wont inactivate them!
But I will always be thankful for Gazcue, I have had 4 wonderful companions here, a WONDERFUL bishop and ward here, 11 baptisms, and countless numbers of people who have changed my life for the better! The opportunity to serve a mission has been the best!
I love you all so much, thanks for your love and support! You are amazing!
Hermana Reay
(P.S.. Aunt Fanny I love you and thank you for all your help with everything and for calling my mom! You are wonderful!)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

It was SO wonderful!!!!

Hello all,

I just love Pday and being able to hear the stories from back home and the things that are going on. Especially that my cute little brother bore his testimony and that my Dad is now installing closets for Kobe Bryant. That’s pretty cool. It really just makes me happy, when I hear about all the people that ask about me and care about my brother and me. Thank you.
Well we didn’t get the big hurricane. Earl just decided to go somewhere else. We had some rain and lots of winds for a couple days but that was about it. I didn’t complain about the cold breeze though. It was definitely a breath of fresh air here in this heat! Today we went to the Temple. It was SO wonderful, I wish that you could all come to the Santo Domingo Temple, I think that it will forever be one of my favorites. I went through in Spanish for the first time! It was so crazy how much I understood (although I was still translating in my head) I loved it! After us 4 Hermana's that are in this area went to lunch at a beautiful restaurant that is on the beach, and it hangs over the Ocean! (Doug it was a different one than the one we went to, but I definitely got Mofongu!) I loved it, we just sat there with the ocean breeze looking out at the Palm Trees on the sandy beach and laughing and talking. Sometimes I really don’t feel like a missionary because I realize that I am in Paradise!
Anyway, yesterday was probably one of my favorite days in the mission! I love to have a day like that because you really learn what the work is all about. We are teaching a family right now and they are all going to be baptized on Sunday! It was just a goal, but yesterday they told us that they are all going to get baptized for sure and they are ready. We were so happy because just a little while before Satan was just working and working on them. They had the dumbest little doubts and it made me so worried because I just knew that if they made this step, they wouldn’t ever regret it and that the Holy Ghost would just help them and confirm to them that they made the right decision. So finally I think that they just felt the spirit really strongly and they all said yes! We were so happy. They are all having their interviews tonight!
We also had a wonderful contact last week named Daniel. I will never forget him for the rest of my life. He was amazing. So there he was sitting on the corner reading from his Bible. So of course we go over and contact him. We just start talking about the Bible and we could see that he is really religious. But then he tells us he doesn’t have a religion. So we gave him the pamphlet of the Restoration and set up and appointment to return. So we taught him yesterday too. You guys just can’t believe how incredibly amazing he is. He pretty much has the pamphlet memorized. He starts telling us a little about his religious background and how he has been investigating a lot of different churches and everything, and how he just doesn’t feel anything at any of them. So we get further in the lesson, we are now teaching about Joseph Smith, reading from his history and Daniel was like "this is just like me, I have all the same questions" anyways, he ate it all up, says he believes in it all and that he is just going to pray about it to get a confirmation. Then I told him our purpose as missionaries and he asked us when he could be baptized! HE ASKED US! But then after he sorta laughed and second-guessed himself and says "well I should probably go to church first!" But he will for sure be there and I know that he will be baptized! He is golden! He is a fish! ;)
Hermana Haggard and I have been working really hard, we have been working all week and we are going to start an English class every Thursday, we have a huge list of people that are going to come, and we also are having an activity in the church this Friday and we are going to be making picture frames that are covered in sea shells from here, they are really pretty! I know that it will be a great turnout! We are definitely working with the ward, and they are getting more and more into the work with us every day! I just love it all!
I am really sad because I don’t know if I will be leaving this area, staying, getting a new comp, or what? We have transfers next week, and I have already been here for 6 months can you believe it? But I feel like I could have 6 more! But I will go where the Lord needs me!
I miss you all and love you so much! Thanks for your love and support!
Hermana Reay
(p.s. this weekend is stake conference and guess who is speaking? SUSAN!)