Hola Familia y amigos!
Thank you so much to the Huch Family for the Christmas newsletter. If anyone else has written, I haven't gotten the mail yet because of transfers. Kate, sorry I didn't write you, letter coming today.
Okay, so the Tabernacle in Logan where we normally write our letters is closed and now I'm at a library where we are timed, so I don't know how long this email will be.
As for transfers, me and Hna. Marcum are staying in Hyde Park. I do not know how this happened because the mission office told our landlord someone was leaving. I am sooo happy to not be leaving though!
This week has been really good. So last tuesday we had dinner with the kid who had just gotten back from the Spain Madrid Mission. It was fun. He loved his mission and it was nice to learn a bit more about the rules with the new mission president. Interesting things:
they wake up at 7:30 and go to bed at 11:30. I'm not sure I will like this, but we shall see. Sisters can serve in the Canary Islands. We are allowed to go to one soccer game or one bull fight. Not one of each. I think i will go to the soccer game Barcelona and Madrid have against each other.
We had exchanges this week. Hna. Marcum went to Ogden and Hna. Krutzer came up to Hyde Park. It was a good exchange for me because we taught 2 lessons and I took the lead. THey both went really well.
We taught the Flores Family the restoration. It went pretty well. They felt tranquilidad (peace) during the first vision. I also committed them to be baptized on January 5th. They avoided answering the question, but i was proud of myself for having the guts to say anything.
Then we had a lesson with Josue but we didn't have very much time so we just went over the Book of Mormon. It went really well though because he read more than we asked him to and he said he really doesn't want to change and that he just wants to know for himself what our church believes, but if he feels something maybe he will change.
I really think God is preparing him. He is really good at calling us when he can't make appointments and when we stop by to visit, he is the first to bring up that we need to make an appointment. I'm really excited to see him progress.
We also had a really good lesson with the Rayon Family. They are less active and have just hit their year mark meaning they can prepare for the temple. So we taught about the temple and played a board game that we made about going to the temple. It went really well and the Spirit was strong. Now we just need them to come back to church.
We had a contact with a woman who at first was not interested. Then Hna. Marcum shared a scripture from the Book of Mormon and after the lady asked us when we could come back! So now we have an appointment with her!
Our branch had their Christmas party. It was really fun to see everyone and they asked us to sing Christmas songs to help narrate the nativity program put on by the primary, so the 4 of us sang. Then me and Hna. Marcum went to help participate in a Musical Fireside another Spanish branch was putting on. As much as i hate singing, it was good to help out and bring joy to other people.
At the Christmas party we met a nonmember husband and wife that are visiting their relatives and are from Guatemala. We set up an appointment with them, and they went to church on Sunday. They also went outside the temple. The Hna. really liked the feeling. They are visiting for a month and I hope we can give them a good foundation of the Gospel and get the missionaries in Guatemala ready to receive them.
With the end of a transfer we went down to Ogden for the testimony meeting where all the returning missionaries share their testimonies. It was sooo powerful. It made me feel like I have so much potential, and one day I want to have a testimony that is so much stronger than the one I have now. President Heirs talked about going home and how they were going to have to take their badge off. That was so weird. I can't imagine having to take my nametag off. It is part of who I am. I am Hermana Olsen. Shelby seems like such a different person.
I love these testimony meetings because the Spirit is so strong, but I hate them becasue I never want to be in their place. I don't want to go home. I don't. I don't want to lose what I have--who I have become. I don't want to stop these experiences. I'm falling in love with the missionary life. I don't do it perfectly, but I am learning and growing so much. I'm scared to come home. Don't get me wrong, I love and miss you all VERY MUCH, but the mission is just incredible. I don't want it to end. I won't know what to do with myself.
So this transfer 2 Spanish sisters went home. Which means that a sister area became an elder area because the Spanish program isn't getting any sisters for a long time. After the testimony meeting we took a lot of fun pictures.
Yesterday we had lunch with a member and she brought her non-member friend who we contacted and are going to try to teach. We also had a Noche de Hogar [Family Home Evening] with a member family. We read the story of Jesus’ birth in Luke 2 and passed gifts to the left or right if you heard angel or shepherd. Then we talked about the gift Jesus gave us. It was good, and we invited them to give a gift to Jesus. (thank you Johnson family for teaching me this tradition!!!!)
Today we had a breakfast as a zone to talk about transfers. Then we ran some errands and then we went bowling. Hence I am emailing a bit later. Everyone is telling us we will be in Spain by the new year. I am trying not to think about it. I don't know how I feel. I want to go, of course, but I love Logan sooooooo much. My heart is breaking. It hurts.
To end on a happy note, I love my mission, and I do feel peace trusting the Lord that I will be okay. I love what I am learning. I know this church is true. Oh, I started doing personal study in Spanish. It isn't so bad. I use my English scriptures occasionally to make sure i understand things, but yeah I think my Spanish has improved.