Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Bring on the Rain!


I had heard about the attack in Boston, but not in as much detail. All of the members and investigators know I'm from "Boston" so they were all very concerned for my family. I just about cried reading about the 8 year old boy. Shelby also sent me an email she said something I really liked, "There is more good than evil in this world". It's true. It's a shame that sometimes it takes an evil act just to see how much good there really is around us. I like this BOSTON STRONG thing...I'm sure there are tons of inspiring stories and funny memes coming out. Thank you for sharing with me. I think it's important that even though we're far from each other we are sharing our lives. 

I also debated for a while whether to tell you something that happened this week or not but when I opened my email I had my answer. I am totally fine but my backpack was stolen. I'm pretty bummed out because it happened Sunday so I had all my stuff from church including my camera (and all my photos, memory card and adapter), nice Spanish scriptures, and everything else including my license. I'm pretty bummed out especially about the pictures and scriptures. I just felt like I needed to let you know because I'm probably going to buy a new camera and have no idea what to do about the ID situation. Luckily I did not have my credit card in the bag. Like I said I really didn't want to tell you this because I know you'll worry but you really shouldn't  things are calm in this area. Plus since we lost our house key we got to spend the night with another pair of sisters and they have HOT WATER...I had forgotten what a shower in hot water was like.
The downside is my agenda was also in my bag and it had all my notes about the stuff I wanted to write to you this week. I know I was going to say that rainy season had started! I was so excited when it started to downpour the other night...I'm so ready for this. There is nothing like falling asleep to the sound of rain. 

Also, my testimony of how much Heavenly Father answers prayers was strengthened big time this week. One of our investigators shared a very special experience she had after praying to know if the church is true. She dreamed about the temple in such a way that when she woke up she was still feeling the spirit so strong. Please pray for her, Cecilia, she investigated the church about a year ago but I really think she's ready now. We also had another investigator receive an answer that really impacted her. After our first lesson with her we asked if there was anything we could ask for her specifically and she asked us to pray that she could find work. This happened on a Tuesday and on Thursday she found a job. For someone who had never really prayed before this had a big impact on her. She told the story in an FHE with our Bishop and his family, and they loved having the opportunity to hear it too. She now prays every morning and night and is reading the Book of Mormon. I know that Heavenly Father answers our prayers and that he is waiting for us to exercise our faith so that He can pour the blessings out upon us. 

My mailing address is the same. You just mail letters to the mission and I get them from the office.  That wont change until maybe the mission change...but I am not even sure about that.

I love you and miss you. Pray for you always.

Hermana Victoria Giossi

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Scientology and Salvation

Hey Family!

Emails from all 3 of you this week! Zach's just barely came in...I was actually in the process of writing how I didn't get an email from him and then Bam! New message in the inbox. Mom, thank you for the pictures...I love them! Dad, I don't even know where to begin with responding to your email. But thanks for the laughs! It was thoroughly (sp?) hilarious.

I'm so glad to hear you got the package, I was worried about that. I debated telling you about it but I thought it would be better as a surprise. I will let you know when my package gets here. I should know almost immediately as I now have a real in with the office elders. 

This week was not too exciting. Other than I think I need to rethink the way I explain my purpose as a missionary to the people here. In this past week we had a man try and convert us to Scientology and another try to save us through what I know to be the sinners prayer. First the Scientology thing: this guy was crazy! we went in to teach him for the first time (after contacting him on the street) and after we sat down he just got up and started bringing all these random books in and telling us how awesome this Scientology was. He was jumping up and down and running all over the house speaking half Spanish and half English ..we were slightly uncomfortable (especially since we had a member with us) so we tried to ask him if we could bless his house with a prayer and then leave him to his studies. He said he didn't believe in God or prayers and didn't want to we left. Then later in the week we went to teach this man and his family the first lesson. When we invited him to pray about our message he said he would if we would say the prayer found in Romans 10:9-10 with him. My companion was confused but I knew what he was talking about. He asked us if we had ever said the prayer to accept Jesus into our hearts...I told him "yes we all should have Jesus in our hearts"  My companion was super confused though. He was trying to save us...he wanted us to say the prayer out loud with him. Remember when I used to do that. I probably would have kept talking about this subject with him but my companion was uncomfortable so we just left after closing the lesson with a  prayer.

But no worries my testimony is still in tact; I haven't converted to anything else. Ha Ha!

Gotta go eat now. Love you lots! Miss you tons! Until next week

Hermana Victoria Giossi

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Gift Of Tongues

Welp I have quite a bit to talk about. First off, I did get my package from the Normandins, it was full of all sorts of goodies to keep me nice an clean hehe. I have bad news...I was not able to get the pictures of the salt painting from Hermana Perry before changes.

Which brings us to the fact that I had changes this past week. I am now in Miramonte. It's pretty different. It's really city and there is MONEY. I'm pretty sure I am in the richest stake in the country. It's a big area so I have a lot to learn in these coming weeks. The cool part is the TEMPLE is in my zone. I get to see it every Monday and Thursday, in fact I can see it out the window right now. It is such a beautiful building and the spirit here is amazing. I was a little sad to leave Hermana Perry, we became really good friends but I'm sure we'll be friends at BYU. My new companion is Hermana Bowers, also a Norte. She's from Utah and is a nurse. In fact she is the mission nurse.  I can already tell this is going to be an interesting experience. We get all sorts of crazy phone calls. But at least now you know I'll be nice and healthy, I thought mom would be happy. Also, good news, we go to the mission office every Tuesday so I will know much sooner when my packages arrive. I think this should be a good time. 

So being in the Stake of the Temple for conference was pretty special. We watched conference in the the chapel right outside the temple. I really loved Elder Holland and Elder Andersen's talks...about believing and faith overcoming doubt. I also felt like there was alot of talk about missionary work. I do love when they talk about missionary work. So I had a pretty cool experience Saturday morning that I would like to share. One of our new investigators agreed to come to conference. We ended up arriving about 45 mins early. It gave us the opportunity to walk around the temple with her...she was in absolute awe and overcome by the Spirit of this sacred place. She was so sad she couldn't go inside and told her she thinks this must be the most special place in all of El Salvador  I loved  being with her and I love this opportunity to share the joy I have with others. I really do feel so blessed to have been in this place for conference...Heavenly Father knows where to put us and when that is for sure. 
don't know if I'll be in any but there was a photographer taking photos for the church. This is is blog if you want to check the pics out...

Also, really cool point about being in a new area other than the one I started in is getting to know new people. Yesterday after a conversation I was asked which country I was from and they didn't believe me when I said the US. They told be I didn't even have an accent when I spoke...I was SO happy I could have cried. I pray everyday for the gift of tongues so that I can teach with the Spirit in the language of these people and not have to worry about them not understanding. I felt like that comment was an answer to those prayers. 

Other random stuff. If you could accept "Irene Medina" on my facebook that would be great, shes Celso's wife. Who is the other counselor in your RS presidency. 
I love you and hope all is well. See you in about a year! 
Hermana Victoria Giossi
P.S. Next phone call May 12
1. At the "Puerta Del Diablo" hair is gross 

2. Hermana Bowers and I in front of the Temple

3. With President and Sister Peterson (Temple President and Matron). They had us over for lunch between Saturday Sessions. 

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Semana Santa! (Easter Week) A Pretty Huge Deal Around Here

Hey Hey Hey!

So it's the last Monday of the change and we went on a field trip. We went to this place called "puerta del diablo" it means "the devils gate" It was super, I meant to write cool. I will send you pictures next week because I'm in an internet cafe and can't right now. But I'm telling you all this to say,  this email will probably be kind of short.

You asked about Easter here, yeah it's a pretty big deal. They celebrate the entire week, representing the last week of Jesus' life. It's a catholic thing but catholic culture is such a HUGE part of the culture here. Every Friday night for the past month people have been doing the "via cruz, It's where they walk around to different stations that display Jesus' life, and between the stations they sing. So they have done this every week for the past month but this past Friday (Good Friday) it was CRAZY! All the roads closed down and people made these huge paintings with colored salt, called afombras, all over the roads. Everyone was doing it, but there where official ones that represent the stations of the "via cruz"/ the palms they laid down when Jesus entered the city on Palm Sunday. It was so cool, we took lots of pictures; I'll send them next week. Then they do this GIANT via cruz over the salt paintings...carrying Jesus in a casket with a statue of Mary behind. It was very interesting. I think that's the big holiday though because Easter was a pretty normal Sunday. 

This past week was pretty good though. We are prepping a few people for baptism. The first is Perla, the woman that showed up at church after 11 years, she told us this week that she can't explain it but she just wishes she was already baptized...makes sense after waiting a decade :) We also have this little old man named Pio, he's adorable and loves learning about the Savior. There's a couple others, but we'll talk more about them as it gets closer. 

Anyway I'm super excited for Diana! Yes, visas are hard to get. After being in the Provo MTC she will enjoy Brazil so much more! Worked for me with Guatemala. Thank you for the pictures! I love them, I print the pictures you send every week. 

I love you all so much! I will hopefully get some pictures out to you next week.

Hermana Giossi

P.S. Pop-pop should probably stay away from the senor centor...he's too cool for that! Hermana Perry says he sounds awesome and wants to meet him.

I got an email from Em...I think Grandma sent her a card. She says THANK YOU!