Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Week 60: Cambios!!!! La Última AREA!!! (maybe)

​Hola, familia!

Well, we have transfers this week! These three months en la Salle have FLOWN by!! I can´t believe that I only have three transfers more in the mission!!! I´m going to....Comitán!!! It´s one of the coolest parts (temperature wise) of Chiapas, and I´m pretty excited to use my sweater for the first time in 14 months! :D

[Here is the Wikipedia page about it: Comitan,Chiapas,Mexico  ]

It was pretty sad saying goodbye to all the people I´ve met en la Salle, it´s a really really awesome ward. Especially Hno P! He´s my favorite person ever, I believe. [He is the ward mission leader there.]

It´s also pretty crazy that Hna Hernandez is going to be leading the area now! I keep thinking "Oh, no, I didn´t teach her this thing well enough," or "Oh, will she remember this?" But she´s a super super awesome person and is going to be just fine. I know that with her new companion they´re going to see a whole bunch of miracles :D

This week I was reading in Alma 26 and I LOVE what Alma says in verse 36: that God, and I also interpreted it as the gospel, is "his life, his light, his joy, and his salvation, and his redemption from eternal anguish." Through the gospel, we are HAPPY! We have the gospel for that one purpose! And we share it as we serve, and help other people. If we want to be happy, we share and serve with others :)

Love you lots!

Hermana Owens



We celebrated Mexican Independence Day! el día del grito! It was super fun. A whole bunch of members brought their non member friends and it was super super fun. One of their friends, E, is really interested and we have an appointment with him for Tuesday! (Well, my companion has an appointment... :D)

el Obispo (bishop) and his family!!!

hno P the rockstar mission leader

Monday, September 11, 2017

Week 59 :El Sismo!

Well, before ANYTHING else, I`m just going to make sure everyone knows that we`re all good. It`s crazy: you hear that an earthquake was 8.2, and that just sounds TERRIBLE. But there really has not been very much damage here. Everyone explains that it`s because it was a vibrating earthquake, one that goes side to side, but the earthquakes that do a lot of damage (like the one in Mexico City in 1985) are the wave-type earthquakes. (I know that I took a lot of years in physical science and I should know the actual names of those two types of earthquakes but I`m just going to go with vibrating and wavy earthquakes :D) But the power came back later that night, I think it came back at about 7 or 8. When we came back, the power was back.

But anyway, we woke up to the world shaking at 11:50 (I checked my watch because I thought that it was the middle of the night, like 2 or 3, and I was surprised I`d only been asleep for about an hour). We ran out of the room, and opened the door, and we heard some people yelling on the other side. There were a lot of people that were yelling things like, "Forgive me!" and trying to repent I guess. It made me ask if we would hear things like that in the States, where people are generally less religious.

After the quake, that I guess lasted for about two minutes, honestly....I just wanted to go to bed. I think I need some practice with having fear towards earthquakes and stuff. After seeing movies and TV shows and everything of huge quakes that throw people around and destroy EVERYTHING, I guess maybe I just don`t feel the fear so much? But I`m also going to attribute it to the Spirit. Like, I felt the importance of running for the door, for leaving, but I just didn`t feel worried. Just peaceful.

So we went down and talked with everyone outside for a while (it`s part of the earthquake experience, sharing your earthquake experience). But then at about 2 Pres. Doman sent us a message that we all had to go to our stake building. Oh! And also, it started raining! And it was POURING! But we went there in case there were big replicas [aftershocks], but there weren`t, so then we went back to our house at about 7. We then went around visiting some members to check how was everyone, but apart from the power, there`s not much damage around here!

President Doman has counseled us since he arrived that we should ask special blessings for people, that as representatives of Jesus Christ, we have the special opportunity to ask a blessing for them. It`s been pretty incredible since we started doing it to see how much it really blesses the people we visit. After the quake, we went to eat with a sister, and she was pretty....frazzled? She was worried because she didn`t have power and her gas stove moved and so she didn`t want to turn it on in case it was leaking gas or something, and I think she just felt really bad that she couldn`t give us something a little bit fancier than a tuna salad and some leftovers. (But I had actually been praying that we could eat some vegetables, so the salad was the answer to a prayer :D) But anyway, in the end Hna Hernandez offered the prayer "as representatives of Jesus Christ" and as she said it, we all could feel the Spirit so strongly. As she finished the prayer, the hermana was crying and just said, "It`s so nice to hear a blessing from His representatives." Because there hasn`t been much damage, I thought a little that maybe we wouldn`t have many opportunities to serve, but it`s so not true! Maybe it won`t be in the normal manner, cleaning up houses and stuff, but we`ll be able to share with the people as they`re more open to the gospel.

I sure love the gospel! I`m so happy to be serving here right now, and I`m so glad I have the opportunity to share the gospel with everyone here! I know that Heavenly Father loves us and that only His will can be done. I love you all LOTS.

Hermana Owens

We also had intercambios this week! I was with Hna Larsen! 2 gringas together! ha ha :D
Zone activity!

Note: While Tess was emailing us, she felt another aftershock. She wrote: 


They`ve been happening quite a bit, but just a few that are stronger. You feel it more when you`re sitting than when you`re standing. Every time it happens we all just kind of look at each other to see if it`s suddenly going to get worse and we have to get running. And yeah, there`s always just kind of this feeling like, "What if something happens right now!" It rains a lot and sometimes you hear thunder and you`re not sure if it`s thunder or if it`s the earth moving. It`s really weird.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Week 58 Update: The Earthquake

Dear friends and family of Tess, 

A dangerous earthquake occurred last night off the coast of the state of Chiapas, Mexico, where Tess is serving her mission. We have been worried about her (I admit I didn't sleep all night), but were relieved to receive an email this morning from her Mission President and wanted to share his message with you: 

EACH ONE of the missionaries who are currently serving in this mission is safe and each is with companion(s) --- and all missionaries are now located in safe locations and areas.

We have had contact with each of the areas and with each missionary throughout the mission, and are in contact principally with the coastal zones (Tonalá, Arriaga, Zapata, Chahuites, Zanatepec, Ixhuatan) to make sure that each missionary is safe. We are hoping to travel there today with supplies.

So far, other than damage to structures, there have been no reported injuries or major problems with any of the missionaries, nor any major incidents, all are well and we are aware of all issues related to making sure that all missionaries are safe and have sufficient food and water and supplies.

Thank you for your prayers!

Presidente Kevin V. Doman
MISIÓN MÉXICO TUXTLA GUTIÉRREZ

The Church also put out a statement about the earthquake:

Church-issues-statement-on-mexico-earthquake

We are so grateful that our daughter is safe, but also know that many are suffering through unimaginable hardships right now and our thoughts and prayers are with all those who are facing such incredible challenges in Mexico, Texas, the Caribbean, Florida, and others.

A little later in the day we received this update from Tess: 

The Earthquake!

We have permission to write our families quick to let everyone know that we´re okay. It was pretty crazy but we´re okay, nothing even broke in our house! Just shook everything a lot. We don´t have electricity right now, and there isn´t electricity in a lot of neighborhoods by here, but we´re okay. Don´t worry!

We´re visiting a lot of people, trying to see how we can help, and I know that everything will be okay! I know that the Lord hears every one of our prayers. Last night, as we were going to bed, I felt that it was really important that we pray as companions very specifically for our families, that they can have comfort, and then came the earthquake! I know that the Lord knows the why and when for everything, don´t worry about us!

Love you lots!

Hermana Owens

Monday, August 21, 2017

Week 56: Hola Familia!

Hola, Familia!

This week was really good, we´re planning with a couple other wards a talent show that´s going to be the first day of classes in Hogwarts! (September 1)

But we´re working super hard here, and seeing some pretty awesome miracles! L came for the first time to church, the wife of C, and she LOVED it. Now for the next week we just hope C comes, too :)

We´ve been working a lot with less actives, trying to help them remember why they were baptized, and I found this in the Liahona for this month: "Every time that a doubt or a question has come up, I've been able to remember the promise I made, and have based my important decisions in my life on that commitment." I just really liked that maybe we´ll see a lot of things in our life that maybe don't line up with how we think things should be, but if we focus on the things we promised by baptism 1) remember Christ 2) keep His commandments and 3) take upon us His name, our decisions will be easy to make because the Lord´s will will always be that we follow Him. So let´s keep the commandments! Woo! :)

Love you all lots!

Hermana Owens ​

A really awkward picture
because we thought it was funny that we have very similar pajamas. 
The hermanas in our district! Hernandez, Nuñez, Zamora, Larsen, Rivera, and Owens :)
The district!


Monday, August 14, 2017

Week 55: The Fireside....more or less :D

Hola!​

Well, it rained the day of the activity, so there was no fireside....but there was still a really fun activity :D yay! :D

What we ended up doing was play some games (the human knot and then they had to give a cup of water (see Matthew 10, the last verse) but all the cups had holes in them so they had to figure out how to get the water to the last cup, which was whole. It was fun, but the biggest hit was that in the beginning we had everyone write their name on a little slip of paper, and then for this activity, to show how well we knew everyone in the ward, everyone would give hints about one person, and then the person who was "it" had to guess about whom we were talking. I had thought we would just do a couple people, but in the end we used up ALL the slips, EVERYONE in the activity! They really liked it, because it showed what sorts of things the people actually knew about one person. Obviously, they couldn´t say, "They´re the dad of such and such!" it had to be clues about what things they liked to do, things special about them. And it was just super awesome, I think it made everyone feel good about themselves, like the ward really cared. And an inactive family arrived, and one of the daughters (who isn´t baptized, we´re working with her right now) invited a friend to come! It was super awesome. But the theme of the night was basically "Light the World" like they did in Christmas, so we gave everyone a little sun, a little lamp, or flashlight, or some little piece of paper to remind them to light the world with service. In the end we didn´t share experiences, but a couple people mentioned to us this week that someone passed by to do something for them, and one hermana just smiled as she talked about it, so we hope that it was able to help more people! :D But it makes me super excited to do more activities! If you have any ideas for something we could do.... :D

But it was really pretty awesome doing the activity. I was SUPER nervous, obviously, and it started off a little shaky, but then we got going and it ended up being super super awesome. It really helped me see that as we stretch ourselves the Lord helps us to grow from our experiences. I would NEVER do something like this before the mission, but I know that it´s helping me so much to be able to keep progressing :D I sure love serving here! It´s incredible to see the ward growing closer and working together!

I was reading "A Consecrated Missionary" and I LOVED this one part I read: "Our all is a small part to give for His all." I´m not entirely sure how to translate that better, I don´t remember the word for "reembolso" but it´s talking about how if we give everything of ourselves, it´s only a little bit of EVERYTHING Christ paid in the Atonement. Really, our everything is only a tiny thing, but He works with what we have so we can see miracles! I love the gospel!

Love you all lots!

Hermana Owens


Hna Hernandez, Cruz, Romina, and me :D
I don´t remember if I told you about her, but Hna E is a lady that we were walking by her house, and we greeted her as we passed but then we felt like we HAD to return and talk to her. She invited us in, and told us that she was baptized about 10 years ago in a different part of Chiapas, but then stopped going, and came to Tuxtla. But since we found her, she hasn´t missed a Sunday, and she feeds us about twice every week! She´s super awesome and everyone in the ward keeps asking from where she came, because she´s super animated to work and help out. It´s pretty awesome how the gospel works in people, to help them feel peace and tranquility in their lives.
B! She´s a recent convert, and super sweet. :)


Monday, August 7, 2017

Week 54: Another Transfer GONE!!!

Hola!

Sorry, I don`t think I`m going to have much time for this email today! But it was a super super awesome week, we had six investigators in church this week, and each one of them is progressing super well! M is working for 19 agosto, and there`s another guy, K, that`s working and progressing super well.

There are a lot of members that we`re excited to comment about their service to us! One hermana went up to share her testimony, about how the service really helped her when the person came to visit her. It was pretty nice, we`re really really excited for the activity :)

I just got an email from Hna Gutierrez, and she said that H is going to receive the Melchizedek Priesthood and that he`s a counselor in the elder`s quorum!!!! And that a cousin of R is preparing for baptism! 5 de Febrero is flourishing, and it`s incredible to see that la salle is, too!

This week I was studying about the Holy Ghost, and I liked a quote from Joseph Smith: "If you listen to the first whispering, you will be in the right 9 out of every 10 times." It was pretty incredible. We have the gift of the holy Ghost, this RIGHT to have a member of the Godhead with us always. So, we should listen to that first thought, because the second will always be the adversary, trying to make us NOT do what we should. We have the Holy Ghost with us if we`re living worthily, and if we have the Holy Ghost, we can do everything that God requires of us! I know if we listen to EVERY whispering, every single one, we`ll do what God wants us to.

Love you lots!

Hermana Owens

Me corté el cabello!

I cut my hair!


A photo of a bunch of kids dressed up like undersea creatures
that I thought was pretty funny.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Week 53: Satz!

This was a really awesome week!

We were able to meet with C and L this week, and they´re REALLY interested in the church. They weren´t able to go to church this week because they had something already planned, but they promised for the next Sunday! I´m SUUUUPER excited for them. They have two sons who, as of right now, haven´t listened to us, but we hope that little by little we´ll gain their confidence.

This week was pretty crazy, because Hna Hndz and I planned my first (and her first) mission activity! Like, it´s a ward activity but we´re planning it. We´re doing a fireside, with fire and marshmallows and everything, and it´s going to be about service, but as preparation we assigned each family in the ward another family or two that they would have to serve. And then we´ll celebrate Friday 11 August with the fireside. So pray that everyone does their act of service this week! We had to write these "invitations" 40 times!! Our hands were pretty tired. But we´re SUPER excited for the activity. Pray lots so that it´s a success!

Workin´ hard or hardly workin?
The assignments!
In my study this week I was studying a lot about spiritual gifts, and I really liked this quote from Heber J. Grant (I´m translating it from Spanish, so if it´s not exactly right, sorry): "Whatever thing in which we persevere becomes easier to do, not because its nature has changed, but because our ability to do it has increased." I loved this, because I feel like I´ve really been able to see that in the mission. Gospel Principles shared the story of Shelly Mann, who had polio but then kept working and working until she won the olympic gold medal. It was really really cool to see how God really does make our weaknesses become strengths. During the mission, I´ve been making a list of scriptures that I find that back up Ether 12:27, that the Lord will make our weaknesses strengths. It´s INCREDIBLE to see all the scriptures I´ve found. God´s work and his glory is our progress in this life, and it´s awesome to see that He helps us to do it if we turn to Him. If you feel like something is hard right now, just keep working and ask for help from Him! And read 1 Nephi 17:50!

Love you all lots!

Hermana Owens

 I tried....satz! Or.....caterpillar!

Ah............but the truth is, it´s not even that bad!
They told us how you clean it so that you´re not eating poop.....
You break off the ends of the caterpillar and then you basically milk it.
The description of the process did not make the caterpillar that much more appetizing.
But in the end, it was actually pretty tasty!
Everything´s better with a little chili! :D​

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Week 52: ONE YEAR.

How crazy!!!!

I seriously can´t believe that in two days I´ll have been in the mission, in Mexico, waking up at 6:30 and going to bed at 10:30, talking with EVERYONE, for ONE YEAR!!! The time literally FLIES. I just got a message that I have to go to immigration tomorrow so that I can renew my green card! Ah! 

This week was really awesome. We´ve been visitng O, and it´s super awesome because this Friday there was a Young Single Adult dance and so some of the YSAs from the ward invited O to go, and he loved it!!! Yay for friendshipping in the church!!

We ate with a really nice family this Sunday, that we don´t know super well. But as we were sharing the message, I feel like we were able to really gain their confidence. and they gave us the names of three family members and their families that they want us to visit! It was like......"AHHHHH!!!!!" we were pretty excited.

This week I´ve been studying the sacrament a lot, but studying that this week also included reading about His death, and His resurrection. It was pretty incredible reading the three different accounts of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and then just thinking about how EVERYTHING He did was for love. We can really overcome any sadness, any trial, anything thanks to Him. I will forever love Alma 7, when it talks about Him taking upon Him our sicknesses. I was also reading about how the Savior can heal anything. It talked about a Japanese man that had to deal with a lot of racism because of WW2, but that as he shared his testimony of our Savior, he was able to help other people see that hate is NOT the answer. I liked a quote from Pres. Monson: "Mother Teresa spoke this profound truth: "If you judge people, you have no time to love them." The Savior admonished, "This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you." I ask, can we love one another, as the Savior commanded, if we judge each other? And I answer, with Mother Teresa: No, we cannot." Love is so important! Charity, the pure love of Christ, is so powerful.

Love you all lots!

Hermana Owens

A girl from the Grijalva! [Her first area.]
She´s the girlfriend of a guy in this ward! 

The Tuxtla night skyline :D


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Week 51: Semana de Milagros Numero ____ (however many weeks I have in the mission. I guess almost 52? :D)

Hola!

To clarify some questions that some people asked me (but as we all know, as Mummy asked me): 

There were missionaries in this área before. Just this last transfer the área was closed, but we´re reopening the área.

[I asked her why she called us “papas” when Google Translate said that means “potatoes.”] 

No, "papas" is potatoes. Papás is parents 😀 With the accent, you put the emphasis on that syllable. So, potatoes would be PApas. But parents is paPAS.

[I also asked her: Scale of 1 to 100: How would you rate your Spanish speaking? And what do you still need to work on?]

90? 85? An A minus? There are still a LOT of words that people just use sometimes. Like, my vocabulary is pretty good, it´s just that in each part of Mexico there are a hundred different words for each thing. So you´re always learning new words for things. Also, there are some things that I still might not say right. Like, I say it more in a manner english-ish than spanish-ish, but it´s generally pretty good.

It rains here, but generally not as much [as in her last area] and not every day. But that brings me to one miracle! We were in a part of our área pretty far from our house, so we have to take a combi [bus] to return to the part more central of our área. And we THOUGHT that we had to go to this one street to wait for the combi, but after we had walked there and waited for a bit we realized that, because it was late, the combi didn´t pass by there! So we had to walk about 15 blocks to go to this OTHER part of the área where the combi would pass. But when we arrived, not a single combi passed! We were getting pretty frantic, it was, like, 8:50, and all this time I was thinking, "Don´t worry, Heavenly Father, I´m praying in my heart, we just don´t have the time to do a real prayer! But I´m praying in my heart for a combi!" But then, it started to RAIN. When it started I was just like, "Nooo, this is the salt in the wound, PLEASE don´t let it rain." But then I just heard that little voice, but SO CLEARLY: "Say a prayer." So I closed my eyes and just thought, "Please, Father, let the combi pass right now." I opened my eyes, and 10 seconds later there was the combi! We got on, and then it just started to POUR!!! As we drove, I felt like we were more in a boat than in a combi! It was a pretty awesome miracle, but I also felt a little bad for not having really prayed BEFORE.

Another miracle we saw: yesterday we met a guy, C! We were asking how to find an address (and contacting while doing so) so we asked him if he´d ever spoken to missionaries. And WOW. He said that he had spoken to elders a few years ago, but that he wasn´t that interested then. But then he was diagnosed with diabetes, and ever since then he´s been looking and looking for a church, to get closer to God! He´s gone to all different types of churches, but then he asked us if the church has the power of healing. It was really really awesome to be able to explain that the same power and authority that Jesús Christ had, and has, is here on earth. We couldn´t promise that he would be healed, because we don´t know if it´s the will of God, but that we could promise him peace and tranquility, even WITH the sickness. We have an appointment for tomorrow, so pray lots for him! He said he would invite his wife and kids, too!!! (So, pray even more :D)

We went this Thursday to talk with the boyfriend who came to church, O, but nobody was home! We were pretty sad, but then this Saturday we felt that we should go visit him. He lives WAY up a hill and there aren´t very many other people to visit if we would go and he wasn´t there. But we were with hno P, our líder missional [mission leader], and we decided to go for it! And he was there! It was worth it :D It was our first official visit with him, and he accepted a baptismal date for August 12! It´ll be a lot of work, but he´s super excited! He mentioned that he wanted to ask permission to have his rest day as ALWAYS Sunday...without us even mentioning it!

I´m so excited to keep seeing the miracles la Salle has prepared for us!

Love you all lots!

Hermana Owens

CHIAPAS <3

"Todo lo puedo en Cristo, que me fortalece."
[I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.]
The sister training leaders gave us this!









Monday Movie Day!
Featuring "On the Way home"
30 minutes about a family that lost their daughter,
but then a good friend shares the góspel with them.
A message of hope and inspiration.
And "The Testaments" with sign language in English
because we couldn´t figure out how to change it.
We only watched a little. It was pretty fun to watch
because the signer was VERY expressive.
Hna Hernández was embarrassed
because she hadn´t bathed yet, but ah well.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Week 50: Hola Familia!

Hola!

This was a super awesome week! We had a conference with President Doman and interviews, and it was super awesome talking to him!

We had a huge miracle in the church this Sunday. All of the investigators that were planning on going ended up not being able to go, but we prayed that we would be able to see a miracle and that investigators would be able to come. And then when we arrived there, a family that we had visited this week came to church, and the daughter brought her boyfriend! And he loved going to church! It was awesome, we have an appointment with him for this Thursday, so pray that everything goes well!

We had interviews with Pres Doman, and he sure is a sweet man. He´s very different from Pres George, but his energy is catching! I´m super excited to work with him. he says that he wants to come out into the field, go on visits and everything! I´m pretty excited for that :D 

Well, love you all lots!

Hermana Owens

The compañerismo!

The familia! They helped us out a LOT here.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Week 49: I still don´t have a new camera....but next week! :D

[We’ve been noticing for a while that all her pictures are out of focus, so we have been begging her every week to get a new camera!]

Hola!

I didn´t notice how bad the pictures were until I saw a bigger image the last week. They´re more or less clear when I´m looking at them in the camera, but they´re obviously REALLY not in focus when they´re big. I will buy a new camera next week. And it´s not that I don´t WANT to or that I don´t want good photos, it´s just that there´s no TIME!!!! NONE AT ALL!!! But it´s okay. We´re going to hope for good pictures next week.

Presidente George left this Friday, and that very same day President Doman [the new Mission President] came to get to know all the missionaries here! He had two conferences Friday, to get to know the missionaries here in Tuxtla and in Comitán, and then two conferences Saturday, to get to know the missionaries from Tapachula and Chauhites. He´s COMPLETELY different from Pres George. Pres George was very calm, a very, well, CALM person. But Pres Doman is like, "YEAH let´s go to WORK!" It´s a little different but I´m also really excited to learn from him! I guess the football coach is coming out... Also, his wife is like that, too. I think she´s even more enthusiastic than him!

So, my companion! She´s Hna Hernandez, from Hidalgo!!! [Hidalgo is just north of Mexico City.] It´s pretty awesome working with her, because she´s way more prepared for the mission than I was! Like, she already knows about a lot of the things we do as missionaries, it's more just explaining ways to teach, ways to contact, etc. It´s pretty fun working with her :) It´s funny, because Hna Gutierrez, my last companion, is training the companion from the CCM [Missionary Training Center] of my companion. (I feel like I didn´t explain that very well. Hna Gutierrez and I were companions. Hna Hernandez and Hna Moreno were companions. Now Hernandez and Owens are companions, and Moreno and Gutierrez are companions.)

All of the companions! The great cambio!
Opening the area is pretty crazy. Our area is HUGE. It has about 8 different colonies (like, suburb areas? I´m not exactly sure how to define how big they are but they´re big, and 8 of them is a LOT).

The house en la salle
The view from our house in Tuxtla!
This week I´ve been really trying to listen to the Spirit even MORE because it´s a little crazy opening an area, and it´s pretty awesome! We´ve found a family that we´re going to be teaching. I´m most excited to work here because we have the most incredible mission leader here. [Each congregation has someone who is assigned to work with the missionaries.] He was baptized three years ago but he has a HUGE desire to do everything really really well. We´re working hard with his son right now to help him get baptized.

Love you all lots! Pray for us so that I have time to buy a camera to send nice pictures!

Hermana Owens


 "What comes from the heart is worth gold
and tastes like chocolate."
We ate with an hermana this week that has a fruit bouquet store.
We enjoyed eating there a lot :D

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Week 48: AHHHH!!!! the scariest transfer ever!!!!

Hola!

Well, I didn´t write until now because we were traveling from Tapachula to Tuxtla: I´m going to be serving in La Salle, Tuxtla Mactumatza stake!!!! And I will be opening an area! And I'll be training!!!
 
AHHHH!!!!! Needless to say, I´m a LITTLE nervous. My battle cry these last two days has been "Whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies." Basically, opening an area means that they drop you blind in an area and you have to figure out what you do by a lot of prayers. I´m a little scared, but I feel like I¨m going to be able to do it.

I´m just writing quick to let you guys know that I'm alive, and that I´ll be enjoying this week a lot! And I'll be requiring a lot of prayers this week :D Pray for us ALL THE TIME, and I know we´ll see a lot of miracles.

I´ll miss Tapachula a lot, but I´m SOOOO excited to see what La Salle brings!!!!

Love you all lots!

Hermana Owens

Making empanadas de platano!





Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Week 47: Feliz Día de los Padres!!!!

Hola!

I´m not actually sure if Father´s Day is the same there as it is here, but if not...Well, happy Mexican Father´s Day!

First of all, the worldly news: There was an earthquake here! 7.7, so it wasn´t that strong and didn´t cause any damage, but I felt my first earthquake in my life! [I looked online and the news said it was a 6.9 magnitude.] It was at 2:30 am, and I didn´t know what to do! It was crazy. I can now die in peace, because I know how it feels for the very EARTH beneath you to shake. It´s pretty crazy.

Also, I tried the long-awaited cicin! Or in other words......ANTS!!!!! They´re crunchy, and HUGE, and taste like peanuts. I also ate them with hot chocolate and cookies....an interesting mix.

Cicin!
Cicin! These ants are HUGE.
 Anyways, this was a pretty cool week! H blessed the sacrament again, and then afterwards we saw him paying his tithing! That was pretty AWESOME. And then after church yesterday he went to Guatemala to visit his family, especially so that he could visit the graves of his grandparents to investigate his family history!!! YAAYYY!!!

We saw a bunch of miracles this week, and I felt like the Spirit was really just guiding us. We have been looking for a LONG time for this one family: the mom is a member and her husband and two kids aren´t members. We had planned to visit them one day at about 7, but they weren´t there. They live pretty far out in our area, so we were pretty disappointed. So we went to visit the bishop and talk about some stuff, and after that we passed the house of the family (family P) and they still weren´t there. So we were leaving, heading out for the main street to take the combi back to the house, when I realized that I had forgotten my umbrella in the house of the bishop! We thought briefly about leaving it there, but not having an umbrella right now in Tapachula is like leaving a lung behind. So we went back for it. When we were going to the house of the bishop, the family was still not there. We asked for the umbrella, and left, and completely forgot to even check if the family was there! But then I heard, like, whistling or something, and we turn around to see that the P family was there, arriving JUST as we were leaving the house of the bishop!!!!! I mean, the timing was PERFECT!!! So then we talked with the family, and they are SUPER excited to get baptized, especially the kids! I´m SO excited for this family! It was pretty cool to see how the Lord works in mysterious ways, even with a forgotten umbrella :D

Look for the Lord´s hand in everything! It makes any day miraculous! :D

Love you lots!

Hermana Owens

This one lady has an alligator hung up on her wall. It´s pretty intense.
Zonas Tapachula México (mine) and Tapachula Izapa (not mine)!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Week 41: Feliz Día de Las Madres! (10 May and 14 May)

Hola, mi familia!

I hope that you´re not going TOO crazy that my emails haven´t been that great lately, but I'm trying to be a little better with sending personal emails. An hour just doesn´t really permit too much detail! 

But, this was a really awesome week! I think I´ve mentioned H here, but he´s this really incredible investigator we have. We haven´t even taught him repentance yet, or at least really, really clearly, but he understands that it´s not just stopping doing a sin, but that it´s these changes we do in our lives to be closer to God, that it´s reading our scriptures every day and praying always and going to church. He´s AWESOME. He´s set for 27 May for baptism, so pray for him lots that everything will go well so that he can do it!

This week the rains started! It hasn´t been EVERY day, so the season still isn´t quite here, but this Tuesday or Wednesday it just POURED. The water reached midcalf, and so when I was walking literally my entire skirt was soaked! It was super fun :D

I´ve been really learning about repentance lately. It´s incredible to see in the Book of Mormon everything that it teaches about what we have to do to change to be more like Christ! Always read the Book of Mormon!

Love you lots! See you Sunday! [On Mother's Day we get to talk to her via Skype! One of the two times a year (Mother's Day and Christmas Day) that we get to see her!]

Hermana Owens

Happy Mother´s Day! This was in a literal MOUNTAIN of mother´s day cakes :)

 There was an activity this Friday for Mother´s Day
and one of the acts was this.
It was kind of weird, but those are the youth of 5 de Febrero!
Smile!
We had exchanges this week!
I worked with Hna Gomez here in Cinco!
It was really fun
(but Hna Tovar and I were also very happy to see each other again :D)

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Week 40: Noche de Talentos!

Hola, mi familia!

This was a really super awesome week! First of all, we had an activity Saturday, called "One day in the mission" with the kids of primary, and so we went to visit people with little kids and it was super fun! They then had a talent show, which was basically my favorite thing in the world. These dances are literally my favorite.

A traditional Mexican dance "los Viejitos" (or, "the little old people").
They just walk around slowly to the music,
beating their staffs against the ground in time to the music.
I enjoyed it a lot :D 



video
"El torro Mambo" 
I really like how everyone cheers. I love everything about this :) especially the last bull. 
Sorry about the quality of the video... 

On another note, we had a super awesome lesson with an investigator that came for the second time to church this Sunday! We haven´t had the opportunity to teach him very much about Joseph Smith or the restoration, but we asked him if he believes that he was a prophet and other questions about the Book of Mormon, and he was just like, "yeah, I believe it´s true." He´s obviously studied, and prayed, and believes for himself that it´s true. He´s really really awesome.

Love you lots!

Hermana Owens

Another awkward selfie :)

Hno Luis, an investigator, and the next hit band.... 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Week 39: Photos! [Halfway Through Her Mission!]

Hola!

I really don´t have time to write but we went to the ruins of Izapa where there´s this rock that has an image of the tree of life. There are a bunch of plaques with information about them so I took pictures of them, too, but I think I´ll show them after the mission. We went with a family from the ward, so they are the kids in the photos :D

[Some information I looked up in Wikipedia: Izapa is a very large pre-Columbian archaeological site located in the Mexican state of Chiapas. The settlement at Izapa extended over 1.4 miles, making it the largest site in Chiapas. The site reached its apogee between 850 BCE and 100 BCE; several archaeologists have theorized that Izapa may have been settled as early as 1500 BCE. Izapa remained occupied until approximately 1200 CE.]

I have received some letters! Actually, Sister Perryman, Aunt Kaylene, and Aunt Karen sent me some that arrived this week from Christmas....I don´t know what happened with Sister Perryman´s card, but there are some holes in it... [Only 5 months after Christmas! I'm guessing we need to send cards right about now to have them arrive by this coming Christmas -- if they arrive at all!]

Oh, I also had a really cool realization this week in my study! I was reading when Abinadi is teaching, and he talks about the commandments, and it hit me that the commandment is "Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain," and we always think about that meaning that we can´t swear, but we also promise that we will take upon ourselves the name of Christ in baptism, so it also means that we can´t be baptized in vain! Like, when we make this covenant, we´re promising to represent him, and so we have to always work to keep that covenant! It was cool. ☺ Now I´m trying to read all the commandments according to the higher law of the gospel, not the law of Moses, and I guess anything that you think of....

But it was a really awesome week!

Love you lots!

Hermana Owens


"Anything the light touches..."

Walking up the ruins
Muy serias [very serious]
Missionaries! And future missionary. All with our backpacks :D