Hello and welcome to my LDS mission blog! My name is Tiani and I have been called to serve a misison for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the Costa Rica, San Jose mission. I'm very excited for the opportunity to spread the gospel!
If you have any questions, feel free to check the church's website!
I hope you are all doing well! This week was truly a week of miracles. The Lord's hand was part of every second we spent. We are reaching and even passing weekly goals. There are still a few to work on but we are getting a lot better. Hermana Hidalgo and I are getting along wonderfully. The members have commented that they like our companionship because of the love we seem to reflect. Could it be true? ;)
We had interviews with President Wilkinson on Tuesday. He truly is a man called of God! I am so grateful for him and his lovely wife. They have done so much for the Lord's cause in Costa Rica and I will be devastated to see them go in July.
G was baptized yesterday (finally!). He's one of those "golden" investigators that you just can't drop. He's been investigating the church for about 6 months (which is a long time in "missionary years"). He even pays tithing. The only thing that held him back from being baptized were doubts he had about the church. But, he came to church every Sunday and came to activities! So, the first time I was able to meet with him with Hna. Hidalgo, she put a baptismal date with him (that's something I love about my companion! She has a gift for receiving key spiritual impressions and acts upon them.) He accepted, which surprised us, and we prayed and fasted and prayed some more. It was amazing how the Lord placed him in our paths every day of this week so that we were able to always know how he was doing. For example, we called G one morning and asked if we could see him that day. He said he couldn't because of all of the things he had to do. So we went to see a recent convert (who is G's friend and neighbor). We were about to close the lesson and leave when G came walking by! The recent convert called him to come inside and he was so surprised to find us there! It was pretty funny.
Yesterday, when he came to the chapel, he kept joking that he had changed his mind and that he would escape after sacrament meeting. But, we could see that he was actually very happy. All of the members were happy as well! He's going to be such an amazing leader in the church. I know it!
Speaking of members, there were a lot of less-actives that came to church yesterday! We were so happy! One of the members, C, is such an amazing member. She really understands the importance of missionary work and always helps us out. The sad part is that only her son, daughter-in-law, and she are active. Her other 3 children and husband are inactive. But, her oldest son, S, has started reading the Book of Mormon again and gave us referrals of two of his friends. We started teaching them on Tuesday. Yesterday, almost the whole C family came to church (we were just missing the dad), and S brought one of his friends, J. His other friend, E, couldn't make it because he was sick, but promised to come this coming Sunday. Several investigators came and members brought friends to the chapel and other less-actives came (mainly to see G's baptism or they came by surprise). It was a beautiful Sunday!
There were many other miracles we saw and I am so grateful for God and His promised blessings towards us. I am beyond happy to see that G can now have the assurance, if he stays true, that he can return with his Heavenly Father to live with Him forever. One more soul! After his baptism he just said, "Como costò, ¿verdad?" which basically means " that took an effort, right?" We agreed with him. Gold does not come cheap.
I love you all! Read the Book of Mormon. It's true.
Already 2 weeks down in Montelimar! We can't believe it!
First of all, I would like to publicly announce that the Lord has blessed my life with some really amazing women. My mother, grandmothers, aunts, cousins, friends, etc. are all angels in my life. I never realized how good I've got it until I came on the mission. There are so many people with broken stories but still have the courage to smile. I admire these women and the incredible women in my life. I loved being able to see my family on Sunday. I love you so much and cannot wait to spend the eternities with you all!
This week was such a beautiful week! C and V were baptized on Saturday and confirmed on Sunday. On Saturday, after the ordinance was performed, they bore their testimonies. It was so beautiful! They talked about the cleanliness they felt as they left the baptismal font and V started talking right away as a member of the church (using "we", "us"), and how he was so excited to be able to have the opportunity to be sealed to his family in the temple in one year. C almost could not speak because of her emotions but testified how happy she was. It was amazing how strong the spirit was! Yesterday, they were confirmed and in the Relief Society, Cristina gave a beautiful testimony of the Book of Mormon. They are "una familia de oro!" (Golden family).
G, a man that's been investigating the church for about 6 months has put the goal to be baptized this coming Saturday! He comes every Sunday, to the activities, and even pays tithing. He used to be a preacher but now comes to our chapel. It's quite interesting, the only things holding him back are his doubts about baptisms for the dead, eternal marriage, and the Book of Mormon but he wants to be baptized. We would appreciate many prayers for him!
That's pretty much this week in a nutshell. I hope you all enjoyed your mother's day and made your mothers feel extra special (I say extra because we should value our mothers EVERY DAY)!
I love you all! This Church is true!
I am loving Montelimar. The members are great and I love my new companion. We laugh a lot together! She has only been a member for 1 year and 8 months! But, she knows the gospel very well! We're in a great district as well. It's strange being the only sisters (we're with 6 elders), but it's fun.
But, I will be honest, this week was one of the hardest weeks of my mission. It was difficult finding new investigators (especially for me because I don't know the area very well) and my poor companion just got done with her training so she was feeling a little bit of pressure.
But fasting, prayer, and obedience makes a real difference.
Yesterday we had a miracle! It was so beautiful. A member accompanied us to a lesson and was teaching us things about our area. At this point in the week, we had only found 1 new investigator: M. We asked the member what helped him on his mission to find new investigators. He (re)taught us what Preach My Gospel teaches us in chapter 9: find as you teach, teach as you find. Generally, when we talk with someone on the street or knock on someone's door for the first time, we introduce ourselves and ask first if we can share a message of Jesus Christ (that will literally change their lives) with them and their family. The general answer to this is: NO. The member taught us to just start teaching a gospel principle, specifically that families can be forever.
He soon had to leave us and we set off on our own, knocking, knocking, and more knocking. And nobody wanted anything. Honestly, door knocking is a very ineffective way to work but most (OK, all) of our plans and back-up plans had fallen through or changed and we were in an area where we had only 1 investigator. After leaving yet another rejection, my companion looked at me and joked, "I think I'm going to cry." We both started chuckling and stood on the sidewalk, wondering where we should go. Before I knew it, I saw tears in her eyes. As the older companion, I couldn't let her see me cry so I just hugged her and told her that this is what Satan wants. He wants to see us discouraged but we can't let him see that because there was a family waiting for the restored gospel.
She agreed and dried her tears. And without thinking (in the sense of not giving time to doubt because when we feel an impression and wait to give heed, doubt settles in and we generally let the opportunity pass), I pointed to a house and said, "Come on, we're going to knock here." We knocked on the gate and 2 women and a handful of young children poked their heads out of the door. We started a conversation with them and ended up teaching one of the women that was there, M. At first, she was very short with us and wasn't quite interested. We started talking about the family. She has 2 daughters and when we asked how long she'd been married, her face changed. She told us that her husband had just passed away a month and a half ago. We testified of the eternal family and she asked us a lot of questions about that and the Plan of Salvation. It was a short, powerful lesson and we will be seeing her tomorrow! She even told us that we can talk with her brother that lives next door.
When we apply what we can learn from the gospel resources, miracles can occur. I love this gospel!
V and C (the family that will be baptized on the 9th), are doing so well! I met them on Monday with the bishop and his wife and they made us dinner. V is really excited to be able to get the priesthood and about the fact that he they can be an eternal family. I almost started crying when I heard him talk about how much he loves his family. FAMILIES ARE FOREVER!
I love you all so much!