Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Be careful what you pray for....

Feliz Navidad!

This week has been... Interesting.  Last Wednesday Hermana Z asked me what I was going to give Christ for Christmas this year.  I decided to pray for patience and apparently Hermana Z was praying for charity.... BIG MISTAKE!

...Sunday I got Dengue.

So, I got to learn to be patient in affliction and Hermana Z got to learn to have charity for her companion who was violently hurling and had a dangerously high fever.... That is what we get for praying for stupid things.

Dengue is awful.  It feels like your whole spine is on fire and like someone breaking all of your bones and then you have a super high fever and a really nasty rash all over your back.... Super good times... But on Sunday the district leader, Elder D (who has memorized all the episodes of Star Trek, but that is just an irrelevant detail) caught a ride into La G_______ to give me a blessing. 

During the blessing he promised me that I would be healed according to my faith.  Hermana Z and I went back to the house and prayed and prayed for patience and faith and charity and when I woke up Monday morning I was significantly better.  Still miserable, but I didn't wish I was dead, so that was pretty good improvement.

Moral of the story is be careful what you pray for, because you never know how Heavenly Father will answer.

Don't freak out, a lot of people get Dengue in this mission.  It is all a part of the experience. 

But let me just say, if I had to get Dengue in the mission, I am very grateful that Hermana Z was my companion during it.  That woman is incredible.  I love her so much.  I love serving here in La G_______, the branch members are so willing to help and even better is that we share the branch with another set of sisters (Hermana G and Hermana K).  We all love each other SO MUCH.  This area is great and serving here is so fun

We have some real miracles coming our way.  We have 3 people who could potentially be baptized this weekend.  Please pray for them!

Pray for:

C_________ (pray that her dad will give her permission to be baptized)


and C_______ H________

It is so humbling and amazing to be able to open an area.  It really shows how reliant we are on the Lord.  It also shows us how much he will bless us when we are exactly obedient and do our part.

Anyway, I will be skyping you all on Christmas Day between 10 and 11 in the morning.  I am excited to be able to talk to you guys (: 

Glad you liked the package! Make yourselves some Pepian!

My little sister is a hot babe!

Les amo muchisimo!


Hermana Wise

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Hola Cambios!

Hola Familia!

Well, this week has been weird.  As you know, last week we got notice that Hermana C_________ and I would both have changes again and that we would be closing Las Delicias.  Well, I packed up all my stuff and hauled it across 2 buses to get to change meeting in the capitol.  To get this report:

"Y en la Zona Santa Lucia... En  La Gomera 1: Hermana G_________ recibira.... Hermana Wise!"

What? I am in the same zone as last time! Haha different district and entirely different area but close to my last one.  I have the same zone leaders and the same zone.  But still on the coast! Yay!!!

Hermana G_________ has about 6 months on the mission and is from Guatemala (the east mission). I was made senior companion (hard to do in a mission where 22 sisters will be going home next change and they are all seniors).  But we headed back to the G________ to work.  The following day, Hermana G________ got really sick (she had denguae).  So she tried her hardest to work but eventually had to stay in the house and I was on divisions with a member.  But, as the day progressed, she got worse so I ended up calling the nurse and it was discovered that Hermana G________ is allergic to mosquitos, which is unfortunate on the coast.  Eventually, it was decided that she would no longer be able to work here on the coast and she was emergency transferred to the mountains. 

So, I recieved Hermana Z_______.  She is incredible.  She has about seven months on the mission and is from Saint George but her parents are from Mexico so her Spanish is perfect.  I already love her so much and I know that this will be an incredible change. 

But.... with losing Hermana G________ that means that I am opening this area.  We are starting fresh, knowing absolutely nobody and doing our best not to get lost or teach any more lessons in the other sisters area (thus far we have only taught two lessons out of our own area....killing it).  But it is definitely a challenge opening as a senior companion, but I am really feeling the hand of God guiding me through.  I love this work.  I love these people.  I love the coast.  I love being a missionary.

I have really learned through my time on the mission that there are always changes...Six week changes, emergency changes, changes in your area or in your companion, the mission is filled with changes.  But, the changes that are the most important are the changes that Christ makes in each of us.  I am changed.  I am converted.  The Gospel has changed me and I have seen the changes that this message makes in the lives of others.

The Church is true. 

Also, we will be skyping on the 25th.  DAD, do you have rehearsal or weird stuff with the MoTab that day? Let us  know so we can plan.  Also, what is your Skype account?  Yay for talking to my family when it isn't about health emergencies!!!

Love you guys! Thanks for all your support.  I am happy to hear about all the different kinds of family progress you guys are making.

Estoy orando para ustedes.

Les amo!

Hasta la proxima semana...

Hermana Wise























Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Some Things Never Change

Wow family,

I wish I could explain to you how incredibly bizarre this week has been.

But first off, I did after all get to watch the First Presidency Christmas Devotional.  Granted, I watched it in Spanish but it was still awesome.  Me, and my converts and Hermana C_____ all were searching for Dad.... WHOOHOO! Right during the first number we all saw you!!!  It was awesome.  They all kept asking:

 "Which one is he? Which one is he???"

To which I answered:  "The tall gringo!" ... Really narrowed it down.

But the devotional was great.  Really helped us feel the Christmas spirit (that, and the fact that it was broadcast on the Day of the Devil so all of the Guatemalans were in the street burning giant statues of Satan made out of straw... Nothing says "Merry Christmas" like almost lighting your neighbors house on fire).

Okay, and on to the strange news...

This week is changes.  The way that changes work in this mission is that Monday morning we get a call from the District Leader informing us if we have changes or not and if we do we both go to a giant change meeting the following Wednesday to find out where we go.  Well... This Sunday night, Hermana C_____ and I received a call from President Markham telling us that we will both be leaving Las D_____....

... Yeah.  Didn't we just open this area?

But, we have been having some difficult stuff going down here with the members and the missionaries (specifically with our branch president).  President decided to try putting in sisters to see if the situation improved, but it hasn't.  So, he decided to pull us both and leave Las D_____ without missionaries for a while "to teach them to appreciate missionary work."

Yeah... Kind of a delicate situation so that is as far as I am going to go with that.  No, we aren't in danger, no we aren't disobedient and being cast out, but yes... we are leaving.  Hermana Conover and I are closing.... AGAIN! Some things never do change.

Moving right along...

Here is a funny story of the week for you all:  Elder Heslington and I happen to be serving in the same zone right now (Elder Heslington as in Jake Hes who I went to high school with).  It's pretty fun to be in the same zone as someone from "the previous life."

Well, this Wednesday during language study we got a call from the zone leaders.  I picked up and it went like this:

"Hey, Hermana Wise we are doing a competition this week as a zone!"

Me:  "ok"

Elder Arrieta:  "Yeah, and we are doing it differently we are doing it companionship against companionship like a bracket."

Me:  "okay, who are we against?"

Elder Arrieta: "Sipacate, Elder Heslington and Elder Richens.  Whoever gets the most new investigators wins."

Game on.


We killed them.

Yes, I am still a bit competitive.... The mission helps us overcome weakness but I am yet to overcome this one. 

Anyway, that is about all for this week.  I love you guys! Hope all is well.  It's weird to be opening and closing this area in the same transfer but I know that it is what God wants me to do.  We have done what we needed to do here in Las D_____ and someday I will explain to you guys what happened.  But, for now just pray for me wherever I end up going.  My guess? The mountains.

Well, until next week when I write from who knows were!

Love you!

Hermana Wise

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

I just want to keep going up

Hola Familia!

This week has been great.  We have been blessed with SO MANY miracles.  It's crazy to think that the start of this month we were opening this area without knowing a single member or investigator and we ended this month with three miracle baptisms.

... That's right, we baptized this weekend.

One of our miracles is named R_______.  He is a 16 year old kid who started going to church with some of his friends at the start of this month.  We had a really hard time tracking him down but we finally were able to find him and he accepted, not only baptism, but also a baptismal date on his first visit.  However, as he kept listening to us he suddenly got offered a job wherein he would have to work on Sundays.  He took the job because his dad abandoned the family leaving him and his older brother to care for his mom and younger siblings.  We were panicking but we went to teach him about the importance of baptism, sacrifice, and how God is capable of working miracles.  He explained to us that he really wanted to be baptized but that his boss already told him that working on Sunday was non-negotiable leaving him unable to ever attend church.

We asked him why he wanted to be baptized and he told us:

"I want to be clean."

We then asked what he would give to become clean and after thinking for a minute he told us:

"Anything.... I will talk to my boss again.  I will come to church on Sunday and be baptized even if it means losing my job."

Wow, what incredible faith this young man has.  The greatest part was that his boss just decided to give him Sundays off he came to church on Sunday and was baptized that night.

The next miracle that we had was L_____, the sister of S_____ (S_____ has been going through a bit of a rough patch, but we are still working with him).  She almost didn't get baptized because she was so terrified for her interview (don't blame her... Elder R_____ can be scary).  But she eventually did it and  despite her crippling fear of water was baptized after church on Sunday.  When she left the water she cried out:


which directly translates to "how delicious!"

Best reaction to being baptized, EVER!

Our last miracle was O______, he was able to finally kick Satan right in the pants and be baptized Saturday night.  He couldn't have been more excited to be baptized.  After the service, he asked if he could share his testimony. Obviously, we let him do it.


With tears in his eyes he humbly said:

"Some of you may have known be before my baptism... I wasn't a great person.  But I have been making lots of changes in my life and I am grateful for this chance that God has given me to change and be baptized.  I know that this church is true and.... I just want to keep progressing.... I just want to keep going up."

Wow, how profound.  As I am about to compete 9 months in the field I feel like this should just become my motto...

 "I just want to keep going up."

I have learned so much during my time here in Guatemala, but I still have so much to learn.  My goal is to just keep improving.  Become a better teacher, speak the language better, know the scriptures more, pray harder, walk faster, contact more people, love the people more, and become a better representative of Jesus Christ.

I just want to keep going up.

That is about it for this week.  The other semi-interesting occurrence was that we bought mosquito nets this week to help fend off the dengue carrying mosquitoes.... But we didn't have a ladder to put them up.  So, we had to get a bit creative (pictures included..... Sorry I am so sweaty, welcome to Santa L_____).

Love you all! Hope Thanksgiving was awesome! For Thanksgiving lunch (we don't eat dinner in this mission.... it's a rule) I ate a tortilla with beans on it....


I love you people! Make good choices.  Share "He is the gift" on Facebook because NO ONE here has computers.

Love yall

Until next week,

Hermana Wise


- Hermana We-Say (dinosaur fighter, professional lice remover, Lamanite warrior, and Dengue survivor..... Not even joking).

... and this computer isn't working.... Pictures next week.

Monday, December 1, 2014

He loves us

Hola familia!

Sorry to write you guys late.  District meeting got pushed back this week so writing did too.  But, here I am!

First off, I sent you guys a package... Get excited.  It's pretty cool.

This week has been edifying.  Hard? Yes.  Frustrating? Yes.  But that is the thing about being a missionary, you are more tired, beaten and worn down than you have ever been in your life but you are also the happiest because the Lord is carrying you through it. 

Recently, I have been focusing on really applying Preach my Gospel into my life, not only studying its teachings but truly applying it to every aspect of my mission.  One of the things that I have been focusing on is our divine purpose.  Each of us is a child of our loving Heavenly Father.  He knows and loves us individually and he will guide us through the paths of life.  As I have been pondering this more and more I have realized how incredibly profound this truth is, we are children of God.  Primary children know this, but do we really understand the magnitude of this truth? I surely didn't before my mission, and I am still learning.  But this truth of the gospel is liberating.

Which brings us to O______....

O_____ is a 50 year old investigator who the elders found 3 months ago.  When they found him, he was drunk in the street.  The elders began teaching him and he immediately gave up drinking and coffee and hasn't touched it since.  He has been coming to church but has been hesitant to accept baptism.  Yesterday, we left to visit him with the intent of talking about temple work.  However, as we began the lesson, he shared with us his fears about baptism (a subject he had been dodging for quite some time).  He explained to us that he is afraid of falling away or falling back into sin after being baptized.  He explained to us that his parents were both addicts and he has struggled with addictive behavior for his whole life.  He explained that he has been raised to be how he is and he is afraid that he is unable to change.  He then said that he told his daughter that he wants to be baptized and she told him:

"Are you sure? Remember how you are.  Are you sure you can do it?¨

The poor man was distressed and doubtful that he would ever be able to change.  As I sat there listening, the Spirit prompted me to ask him:

"Hermano, who knows you perfectly"

The question caught him off guard, but he answered correctly:


I responded:

"Yes, God knows you better than you know yourself.  He knows you better than the missionaries.  He knows you better than your daughter.  He is your loving father, you know that?"


"He believes in you.  He knows you can do it.  He loves you so much he sent his son Jesus Christ to pay for your sins.... And if you had been the only person to ever live on earth He would still do it.  He loves you O_______.  You know why he loves you?¨


"Because you are a child of God."


"Who are you?"

".... I am a child of God"

"Say it again!"

"I am a child of God"

"Say it like you believe it!"


We then read in Romans 8:16

"Porque el Espiritu mismo da testimonio a nuestro espiritu que somos hijos de Dios."

Hermana C_________ and I testified that because he is a child of God, he can be successful.  He can change.  We challenged him to get baptized this weekend....

... And he accepted. 

Family, I want you to know that I know that Heavenly Father lives.  He loves us.  I know that He sent his son Jesus Christ to suffer and die for our sins because he knows that we are worth it.  I testify that through the atonement of Jesus Christ we can change.  Satan tries to tell us that we can't, tries to tell us who we are, but we are children of our Heavenly Father.  We are infinite and powerful and with His help, we can do all things. 

Funny story of the week:

P day I cut my own hair (it was time, and if you had seen Guatemalan haircuts you would do it yourself too). 

Anyway, Hermana C_______ decided that since it turned out okay for me she would give it a whirl too..... Her quick trim ended up with her cutting off about 4 inches of hair and I had to finish the job because it was such a mess.

We all learn.

Love you guys! Read your scriptures and remeber quienes somos!


Con amor!

Hermana Wise

I pooped today

Hola familia!

Well, truth is that there isn't much to talk about this week.... So let me explain the title to this email.

Here in Guatemala, people shop in secondhand stores called "pacas." A paca is generally filled with all of the interesting clothing items from the US that they couldn't sell in Goodwill so they shipped them here.  Anyway, the thing is that people here don't understand the English phrases written on their shirts.  Thus, you end up with some interesting sayings on some interesting people.  For example, the other week I saw "army wife" on some Guatemalan gang buster´s tee shirt...

Well, this week was district p day, like all district p days in Guatemala, we decided to play soccer.  One of the Latino elders in our district, on his way to p day, stopped at a paca to buy a tee shirt to wear while we played.  This poor guy had NO IDEA what the thing he bought said, but he showed up to play wearing a tee shirt that proudly proclaimed:

"I pooped today."

Good for you, elder.

This week we have been working hard and seeing some results coming from it.  We have been working with a young girl, L_______, and trying to help her work toward baptism.  All of her family are members but, she never got baptized because her family is inactive.  However, as we have been teaching her I felt distinctly that her older brother, S______, wasn't a member.  I asked him, and he assured me that he was indeed baptized.  I also asked the branch president who told me the same thing.  But, I just couldn't shake the feeling that he wasn't a member.  So, despite my companion thinking I was crazy, I called the secretaries of the mission to have them search for his records.  Sure enough, they don't exist.  S_______ is not a member.  What we are assuming happened was that he was baptized and never confirmed.  This means that he can be baptized with his sister on the 30th of November.  What a miracle.  This really helped strengthen my testimony that God really will bless us with the whisperings of The Spirit that we need to help guide us to the people who need to be baptized (even if they were already baptized before). 

Cool, eh?

Other eventful thing that happened this week is that I had divisions with Hermana B_______. This was my third time having divisions with her and she is awesome.  She honestly feels more like a friend than a training leader.  But, here was our funny quote from divisions:

Me: " I am going to throw away my trash from my water real quick."

Hermana B_______: "Okay, and I will throw away the trash from my cookies so that no one knows I am not on my diet"

Me: "If diarrhea is a diet, we are all dieting!"

Okay, maybe you have to be a missionary in Guatemala to think that is funny.. But let's just say we all deserve " I pooped today" tee shirts.

I apologize that most all of this email is about bowel movements.... Yes I know that I am 20 years old.  I will try to be more spiritual next time.

Still praying for you! Love you guys!!!

Sepan que les amo!!!

Hermana Wise