Monday, May 20, 2013

Hospitals, Pueblos, and a Little Miracle at Church

¡Hola Otra Vez!
This week we have been getting acquainted with all the little pueblos (towns) that surround Benidorm since we have a lot of members and inactives living in those areas. On Friday we took the train for an hour and a half to a place called Denia just to have lunch with some members. Crazy, huh? The family is amazing though, and always come to church. It´s so nice to see a strong committed family...and it´s because the father served a mission, love that. It was our first time taking the train North of Benidorm and it was so worth it! The scenery along the way was incredible! I think Spain might win all the prizes...and I´m not partial or anything. The white-washed towns, cliffs, mountains, sea, and coastline are breathtaking. I love the little pueblos, it is such a nice break from the craziness and tourism of Benidorm. Seriously, it´s not even hot yet and people are already taking off their shirts at every chance they get.
Soooo it seems like everyone in our branch is in the hospital or something. That´s where we were all evening yesterday. Two women have cancer and another little baby (he´s 9 months old and tiny) has some health problems with respiration that I don´t understand since it´s all in Spanish. So we have been visiting them and trying to help since most of them are part-member or inactive. It is the saddest thing especially the little baby since he reminds me of the nieces and nephews. But it only strengthens my testimony of how incredible the Atonement is and all of these families are such great examples of faith and hope despite their challenges.
Sunday was great, crazy, and a little weird. Antonio (one week until baptism!) and his two kids came to church and it was so wonderful to see them there. I don´t think I´ve ever sat through a more stressful sacrament meeting...trying to entertain his kids and make sure people would keep the door closed so they wouldn´t run out every two seconds. This branch is still learning not to talk or walk around during sacrament meeting haha. Antonio is seriously gold I swear, he was basically teaching the class for us at some points! Also one of our less active members showed up, which if you knew him is pretty incredible. We were at his house and he broke down, thanking us for coming there with power from God to change him. Pretty cool stuff. And as he took the sacrament he was crying the entire time. Hopefully we can rescue more and more less actives as well. And while we were teaching Gospel Principles a girl my age from Gabon in Africa walked in. She saw us on the street the day before (we didn´t see her or talk) and then Sunday as she was walking by the chapel she decided to come in! All alone and had never heard of the church. Hermana Martín and I were like...uh what?! She speaks French and enough Spanish (I wish I remembered my French but it all went out the window with starting this mission). We desperately need new investigators and this was such a blessing. So Sunday was such a good surprise! And I finally got to eat paella with a family that is actually from Spain

Hey any of you former missionaries, if you have good ideas on street contacting, knocking doors, and finding new people to teach I am all ears! I am so bad at it and you all know that I am shy enough as it is haha. Any catch phrases or things you said to people to break the ice and actually get them to listen? Oh and thanks for the info on Jehovah Witnesses! It actually is already being put to use. A roommate of one of our recent converts is one and was "discussing" it with us. But he´s seems more receptive than most so I think we actually might teach him at some point. Oh and I encourage all of you to give references to the missionaries, invite people to hear the gospel, and watch Mormon messages because they are seriously the bomb.
Love you all,
Hermana Thompson
ps- pictures:
Me in Vila Joiosa where most of the members and Antonio live. It´s my favorite place in our area :)
Hermana Martín walking in Vila Joiosa
The view out our window. Sweet, eh? (above)

 more pictures!
the view from the train on the way to Denia
Hermana Martín "studying" in the train (we are seriously always tired, hungry, and in need of a bathroom. so remember to always feed your friendly neighborhood missionaries!)

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