Sunday, October 18, 2015

Hermosa Guadalajara‏, Rabbit Stew and Selfies

Kathleen and her companion have been transferred to Guadalajara Spain.  There have never been Hermanas there before.  Here is her report:

First and foremost: Guadalajara is GREAT! I love it here. Here are the
main reasons:

1. The elders here are angels. Normally when you open an area, you
don't have a book information from old investigators... Let alone
investigators. We got there and the Elders (Nash and Broadbent) found
old investigators for us, gave us referrals, invited us to meet
members, and are letting us teach the only person they baptized in
either of their missions. They are a shining example of what it means
to be Christlike. And awesome.

2. The ward is any missionary's dream. The members really like doing
missionary work and they particularly like having sisters. Half of the
phone calls we made to members this week went like this:

"Hi, this is the sister missionaries. Is this Nico--"

"AHHHHH!!! It's the sisters! We have sisters now! Oh, Hermanita! I've
been praying that we would get sisters for months! When can we have
you over? What do you like to eat? What's your name? Can we come on
appointments with you? Where are you from?..."

3. Guadalajara is really pretty and we get to walk a lot. I don't have
to deal with the metro for at least one transfer.

4. We have some AWESOME investigators already.

5. The bishop is one of the best bishops I have ever worked with. Same
thing with the ward mission leader.

6. There are several young women who want to serve missions and have
been calling us to ask if they can spend time with us. They go
contacting with us sometimes!

Now for the stories from the week. Warning, the part following the
stars might not be suitable for people with weak stomachs.


Okay, I wanted to write about this because I officially ate one of the
weirdest things in my mission. A rabbit's head... Actually two... This
is what happened:

We were invited over to an Argentinian family's house, the
S's. They are rumored to be the best cooks in the ward, so
I was really excited. They had cooked rabbit that day, so I was even
more excited. Until they lopped the rabbit's head on my plate.
Normally the way rabbits are butchered here is they are skinned and
cut in half down the middle. They do not bother to remove the head,
and so when you go to the grocery store they have a pile of rabbit
corpses all looking straight at you. It's weird. Normally people
remove the head and it's not eaten. This family also doesn't like the
head and thought they removed it. They did not.

I realized I got the head when I realized that the rabbit was looking
at me. I could see it's eye and teeth and everything. so I sort of
pushed it to the side. Everyone else got normal things like legs. The
daughter, who served a mission and understood my misery, saw that I
got the head and slyly asked me if I wanted more rabbit (understanding
that I probably didn't want the head). She reached in for another
piece of meat, and plopped the other side of the head on my plate. She
gave me back the plate and suddenly realized my dilemma...

The mother was asking me if I didn't like rabbit, and I finally came
clean and mentioned that I had gotten the head. They said that was
impossible because she had removed it. Only those Spaniards like the
head. The family started poking the meat on my plate insisting that it
was not the rabbit head. I tried to eat it, but I gave up after it's
brain fell out on my plate. They all came to the conclusion that it
was weird and decided to make a pizza instead. I don't think I've ever
been more grateful!


Okay, weird story over! You can all read about the rest of my week!

It started off a little slow. Since Hermana Clements and I didn't have
many leads, we just hit the street and contacted. We had to stop to
rest her foot a bit, but we actually got a lot of work done.
Guadalajara is a less receptive city compared to Leganés and Barrio 3,
so we had to work extra hard. So far we have three investigators, but
they are AWESOME.

The first is K. He's from Iran, but had to leave many years ago
because he was in opposition to the government. Many years ago, he
converted to Christianity. We walked into his shop one day to buy a
snack and he started up a conversation with us. He wanted to know more
about what we believed and so we taught him a little about the Book of
Mormon (we actually had one in Farsi that we were going to give Sr
back in Leganés, but he never met with us again) and the next day we
came back and taught him about the restoration of the church, which
appeared to answer a lot of his questions.

He's kind of an eccentric guy, and he talks A LOT! I think he really
appreciates that we do come and listen to him, though.

The second person is Va. She's from Senegal, and we met her on
the street one night. We talked a little about the restoration and she
asked if she could come to church. She actually seemed really excited
to talk to us, and tried to come to General Conference.

We also met En, a young man from Equatorial Guinea. He's here
studying and is very interested in religion. We met him on Saturday
night and he seemed really interested. We invited him to come listen
to conference the next day, and (drumroll please)... HE CAME. He also
loved it. He was talking about all the apostles and prophets
afterwards like he had been a member his whole life. He said he
learned a lot and felt like some of them were talking to him. The
members were also really friendly to him.

We also met with the Elder's recent convert this week. She hadn't had
the new member lessons, and they wanted to know if we could be in
charge of teaching them to her. Aa is really cool. She had been
waiting to get baptized for a year and a half because her mother was
very opposed to it and still doesn't know she got baptized a month
ago. In the mean time, she graduated from seminary and got her
personal progress award. She's a really strong convert. We talked
about the Restoration of the church and she really felt the Spirit. We
talked about how she will be a good example for her family even though
they are resistant right now.

I will never forget the first phone conversation we had with her:

"Hey, Aa, we're the sisters assigned to your ward, we wanted to
get to kn--"

"QUE ALEGRIA! We have sisters now!" (She squealed this at the top of her lungs)

We love her.

I love all of you.

Con amor,

Hermana Sykes

This is Hermana Clements, and Kathleen.

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