Thursday, February 28, 2013

My Tiny Country

Hola Hola!

Well looks like you do read the church news after all. I was thinking you didn't and wouldn't know about this new mission situation. I only knew they were splitting our mission and I figured they would be doing the same with others...but 58! Holy smokes...I can not even believe how the church is growing. We found out about this on Wednesday. It was weird - President called us all to the change meeting, even though we weren't being changed,  He was talking about how change is a good thing. Change is an opportunity for growth and how sometimes we don't want change but we grow to love our new situation too. Then he dropped the bomb on us that he and Hermana Glazier have been reassigned to the new El Salvador San Salvador East mission effective July 1. We have a change meeting on the 26th of June and wherever we are after that change determines what mission we will be in. President Glazier made it clear that although he will be assigning us it is through the Lord's inspiration, and either way we will be in good hands with our Mission President. I love the Glaziers and of course would love to keep them as my Mission President (they will only have 10 hermanas in their mission) but I know that the Lord knows me and where I need to be. 

My little country (the size of Massachusetts) is going to have 3 missions! I can hardly believe it! I've been thinking about what this means for missionary work here and I thought about a couple verses in Alma 29... " Yea, and that same God did establish his church among them; yea, and that same God hath called me by a holy calling to preach the word unto this people, and hath given me much success, in the which my joy is full. But I do not joy in my own success alone, but my joy is more full because of the success of my brethren...behold they have labored exceedingly, and have brought forth much fruit." (Alma 29:13-15). The work is moving forward quickly and I am so blessed to be a missionary at this great time in the history of the church. 

That's SO exciting about the Ericksons...I've never been a Mission President but I know that they will be blessed more than they can imagine in these coming 3 years. 

The girls are getting so big but still as adorable as ever. Sounds like you are having a ton of fun at home. Sleepovers with the twins, playing Catch Phrase (my favorite game), missing me...just kidding, I do miss you all though. 

I have to go now, writing time was short this week. In my next package I might need some new foundation, I like cover-girl lux-nature 315 "bamboo", if that makes sense. Sorry I know I ask for alot but I bet you can shove everything in there lol. 

Love you lots! 

Hermana Victoria Giossi

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Trip to the Ruins!


We found out about changes today, Hermana Perry and I will both be here together for at least another 6 weeks. Yes the package was great, I have now actually had a chance to enjoy the contents. The bracelet is super chivo (cool), and you're right the beef jerkey is super rico (rich, but it means its tastes really good), I am also enjoying the candy, and you will be seeing the results of the adapter shortly :) 

Okay, so the super cool activity from Friday. We got to go to RUINS! They aren't open on Mondays, which is why we had to change P-Day. The things is President never authorizes changes in P-Day, but we have the office elders and assistants in our zone and their P-day is always Friday. The assistants put in a good word with President asking if we could have a zone P-day and I dont know all the details but he gave us permission to go! We are probably one of the only groups in our mission who will have had this opportunity so I´m pretty grateful for the chance. 

First we went to the ruins at San Adres, which is like a temple site. (you can probably look these places up on Wikipedia if you want). It was really cool and we had so much fun as a zone. The Elders all played King of the Hill and were battling with each other (boys will be boys), I of course took pictures. There was also a group of tourists there from South Carolina. I was totally confused when I heard a southern voice talking to me in English, the funniest part was that I began to respond in Spanish (it's a habit , poor thing looked absolutely shocked so I switched to English. (She was asking me why there was no toilet paper in the stall in the bathroom-it's a thing here, you have to get it from outside before you go in). But the assistants were telling me there are some really nice (cheap) hotels around all the tourist sites, so maybe one day we could family trip it back here one day...maybe. But Costa Rica is probably prettier, lol. 

Next we headed over to Joya de Ceren, which are ruins of just an everyday city. It was so cool. And really peaceful. It was kind of weird to think about how thousands of years ago there were just people there living there lives. I'm sure they never imagined a group of weirdly dressed jovenes (young people) would be gawking at the ruins of their homes and town square. Also, Hermana Perry and I got to ride with the assistants in their truck, it had AC. I can't remember the last time I felt AC! Oh and a clown helped us cross the street, haha. 

Man, I want to see pictures of all this snow, that's crazy! 2 Big storms in a row. As far as the tough mudder, I'm sad I'll be missing this. Dad should do it! Whenever the other missionaries see pictures of Daddy they always mention how big he is. "El es bien fuerte?" which is to ask if he's strong. 

As far as package requests go, just that one CD ("Showtimes" or something like that) and my "Called to Serve" CD, I think it's in the RAV. And more pictures! I LOVE PICTURES! Also, surprises, I like surprises. 

Pray for you always. Love you and Miss you! 

Hermana Victoria Giossi


 Making Pupusas with our recent convert Dora. She taught us how but the recipe is kinda complicated. I might have to do it a few more times before I could make them for you. But you will try them one way or another when I get home. They are SO good. 

 At the Ruins at San Adres. My hair is looking real good, I know. But theres not much I can do about it in this heat. Also, Hermana Perry and I thought we were going to be last to the bus and we ran the usual 15 minute walk to the chapel in 5 mins. 

 At San Andres with Hermana Perry. We were SO excited to be there

I really am Part of an Army! - 4,000 Missionaries

So this is weird right? Getting an email from me on a Friday. The short story is that for this week only they changed our P-Day to Friday so we could do a super cool activity. I will write more about it on Monday (because if not I will have literally nothing to say about the "week"). In other news I received the package. Thank you for everything! Although I am a little confused about why the person I assume is Uncle Jared is wearing a horse mask in that picture with Alyssa? I also got letters from Bro. Metro, Sis. Enya, Sis. Sherrard and The Cabreras!  Thank you!! It makes my day!
Things here have been pretty good. I'm about to finish my training which is pretty crazy. Hermana Perry and I are hoping for one more change together here, but we'll see what happens. We had a multi-zone conference last week. That was pretty fun. President told us that they are going to be opening a new MTC in Mexico soon and it will be the second largest in the world (only Provo is bigger). Last Wednesday the first group of the new younger missionaries entered the MTC...4000 went into Provo! That is absolutely crazy! I really do feel like I am part of an army. 

We also had two day intercambios this Wednesday and Thursday. It was a little bit stressful for me because I was left in my area with a mini-missionary. But I did it, and I learned a ton from her. Hermana Hernandez is a recent convert of less than a year, trying to decide if she wants to go on a mission. We had a lot of fun together, she is hilarious. 
So I have a funny story for you. A few Sundays ago Hermana Perry and I were coming home from breakfast and we cut through the church (it's faster that way). We were  approached by a woman asking us what time the meetings were at. We explained that it depends where she lives and the whole situation with having 3 wards in the same chapel. She told us about how last year these two elders had invited her to church and how she told them she would come so she came. She told us it was a Gautemalteco and a Gringo that she had talked to and where she lived. Turns out she lives in our area but near the limit with an area of two other elders (who happen to be a gringo and guatemalteco) so we went to visit her. When we showed up she proudly took out the pamphlet the elders had given her. We were expecting a Restoration pamphlet but what she gave was this black and white pre-Preach My Gospel era pamphlet printed in like 1985. We were shocked, it obviously wasn't last year that these elders met her, especially since the names written on the back were two elders that are not here anymore and no one has ever heard of. Well...almost no one. We were talking about this experience in Ward Council and when we mentioned the name of the Elders our RS president let out a gasp and exclaimed, "They baptized me! 11 years ago!" Yes, that's right, this woman showed up at church because over 11 years ago she promised two elders she would go. The coolest part is she has been going to church with us now and in our last meeting basically asked us when she could be baptized. It's pretty awesome she is reading the Book of Mormon and everything. After 11 years she came to the chapel for a reason, right?
Also, one day Hermana Perry and I were waiting to cross the street and this "viejita"came up and asked where we were from and started talking to us. She wanted to cross the street with us. A bus stopped and let us cross, and she joked that it was only because we're gringas and if it had just been her the bus would have hit her. There is really no point to this story she just specifically told us to write home about it.
Sounds like things are nuts back home with Blizzard Nemo (that's a really weird name, Clown Fish are tropical). But everyone loves the pictures of the snow, especially the Latinos...they're amazed. I also have to say, the mental picture of Jen, Aimee and Mom playing outside in the snow together makes me chuckle a bit. Oh and not really related but in the pictures you sent in the package you can totally tell that Daddy has lost weight.
Anyway, I am about out of writing time and I am really working on being exactly obedient ;) I love you and a pray for you everyday. 
Hermana Victoria Giossi
P.S. Today I was riding with the assistants in their truck and they have this Mo-Tab CD with a bunch of songs from movies (Like the Lion King) and stuff on it. I think its called "Showtime"or something like that. If one day for my birthday or other random occasion you could ship one of those out that would be sweet. I'm getting sick of the same music over and over again haha. 
Also, to save money you should trying shoving things more tightly in packages, that's what Hermana Perry's family seems to work. I don't know, give it a shot. 

Monday, February 11, 2013

Visit from the President & Wife!

Hello all,

Celso finally got baptized. Technically I have 3 baptisms but this is really the first person I taught, and watched as they changed their life. His wife is already a member, so in a year they can be sealed in the Temple, how exciting is that?! You know, baptisms are what makes the mission so worth it, but they're also pretty stressful. You want it to be perfect and wonderful for this person so that they remember it. The problem is that we have had really low ward attendance at our other baptisms, so we were working really hard to make sure everything went perfect with this one. So Thursday afternoon(Baptism was Thursday night) we come home from District Meeting and we have a missed call from President's cell phone...that's super weird, President doesn't just call, usually just the zone leaders relay mission business to you. We called him back immediately, and he asked us what time our baptism was and then told us, "Great, see you there." So we were super stressed after that. Sure enough, in they came and President even gave a little thought. He is super powerful. It amazes me always. Hermana Glazier told us afterwards that she thinks we just baptized a future Stake President...sweet!

We saw alot of President and Hermana Glazier this week, Tuesday we went up to the mission home for a Hermana Conference. All the sisters in the mission were there (28 of us). It was super fun and inspiring. Also, there is one hermana newer than me in the mission, wooho! She is really homesick though, she told me these have been the longest 2 weeks of her life. She asked me if I felt like that...the truth is no. Of course I miss everyone but I'm having so much fun. Time is flying by. For example, I was looking at the calendar the other day in amazement that January was already over. I thought to myself, "Wow, I've already been here for a whole month, that went fast." Then I realized I've been here for 2. 

Let's see what's else happened this week? I learned how to make Pupusas with Dora, one of our recent converts. That was really fun, maybe next week I'll send pictures. I have a passion fruit, they are super delicious. I introduced Hermana Perry to Nancy' salve...she is amazed by it. One of our investigators told us he is an explosive person and he doesn't like when people mistreat others. He told us this story about one time when he was on the bus and he saw a man trying to rob a 14 year old, our investigator grabbed the man's hand and then started stabbing him with a pen until he left the bus. Whoa a bit crazy.

Sounds like everyone is doing amazing. So happy for Grandma (THANK YOU) that is amazing. Not, as happy about the Ravens beating the 49ers. But, I had pretty much forgotten the Superbowl was this week.

Well, I gotta go so others can write. Love you, miss you, pray for you always. 

Hermana Victoria Giossi