Monday, May 26, 2014

Livin' The Life in Lima :)

Hello familia! 

         I’m a little late this week emailing haha but better late than never right?
         We got a call Sunday night at 11 and our zone leaders let us know I was going to Lima the next morning at 6! Talk about short notice.... But it was great :) I can honestly say I took soooo many things for granted before the mission! The hotel had HOT water. Yes. Hot. Water. I almost cried. AND McDonalds. That’s right. We were livin the life for two days. It was the best! But I’m now back in Sullana with cold water... It was good while it lasted ;) 
         We went to Lima to figure out visa stuff. I’ll be headed back in a few weeks again to finish I think. Lima is crazy though! I missed Piura...
         This week has been the best though! First we had a visit from Elder C. Scott Grow of the 70. The coolest was Thursday. All of the Zone and Sister Training Leaders went to the mission home and he taught us. Pretty much a lot is gonna change in the mission. We aren’t even close to our potential. There’s a lot more we need to do. I won’t bore you with the mission details, but I feel like everyone has a lot more enthusiasm after his visit. 
         Then we were with him Friday in Piura and Saturday in Talara. Kinda funny story. Soooo... I already know I’m gonna be that weird return missionary. When we were in Talara, Elder Grow talked to each of us individually. He was asking me where I was from (surprisingly he’s heard of it) and I said something and he laughed and put his hand on my shoulder and the first thing I did was panic that a man was touching me. The first thing that passed through my mind was, "Oh no! He can’t do that! He just touched me!" and then I think everyone noticed my awkwardness and then it was just even more awkward. They should probably add in the rule book that it’s not okay for a guy to touch a sister missionary, unless he’s a General Authority. That would’ve been a good addition to the rulebook. Seriously. 
         Anyway now the best part! Moises and Jesus got baptized! Oh yeah :) It was one of my favorite baptisms. (I think that every time though...) But really. Jesus was sharing his testimony afterwards and said, "This has been one of the best days of my life. I imagine one day I’ll be in the mission sharing how I felt this day." BEST THING EVER! His mom probably wanted to pass out haha. That’s the first time he’s EVER said anything about a mission. I just love the Cisneros Family! Sandra (the sister) wants to get married next Friday so she can get baptized too! :) We’ve been getting together all her papers today. I can seriously see why nobody here wants to get married and it’s easier to just live together haha sheesh. But it will be worth it :)
         Well time to go. Love you all so much! Can’t believe its already been a year. I know we have all changed so much. I can’t wait to see what God has in store. We are so blessed. He loves us so much. I know this church is true. The only true church on the face of the earth. We are so blessed to have the truth.
         Hope you all have a great week! LOVE YOU!

Hermana Roper

P.S. Mary and Mckette thank you SOOO much for the letters to my companion. It meant so much and put such a huge smile on her face :) Love you both. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

We Need To Do The Best Things

Helloooo there :)
         I told you, Tyson, that you weren’t supposed to take state this year! You were supposed to wait until next year so I could cheer you on!! What were you thinking?!?! I´ll forgive you though.... As long as you do it again next year :) Seriously, way to go! I also wouldn’t mind if you gave me one of your rings... Juuuust sayin. 
         And Haidyn, I LOVED your dance pics! You go girly :) I´ll be back soon enough to bust a move with ya ;) Cutest sister ever. 
         It was a great week here, too :) It had its ups and downs, but stuff happens, right? Want the good news or bad news first? Lets start with the bad. Moises and Jesus didn’t get baptized :( Dang Satan is good at what he does! It’s not anything they did. Things just didn’t work out. Here’s the deal. They both reeeeally want the bishop to baptize them. Moises, who doesn’t talk much or show any emotion, actually called the bishop to formally ask him to baptize him. It was cute :) Well... Just so happens that the bishop had to fly to Lima Sunday night at 5. So we thought, "Hey, let’s just do it after church then!" BUT if we did it after church their family couldn’t come. It was a lose-lose situation. It will be worth the wait. We had to postpone it until this coming weekend. It needs to be special for them though. All week Hermana Callizaya just kept saying, "Satanás es real!" haha. But really. Darn him.  
         Now the good news? :) We have a new investigator, Marcos. I don’t wanna jinx it, but it seems too good to be true. He pretty much came to church and said he wants to be baptized. He said he was all ready to be baptized two years ago but his parents wouldn’t give him permission. Now he’s 20 and is back :) His parents don’t know he’s back though. They think he’s studying. He doesn’t care though. He said he’s getting baptized and that’s that. His baptismal date is for the 7th :) 
         This week we also had two exchanges. I was with Hermana Rebeca Rivera from Lima and Hermana Dani Johson from Nevada. Such cute girlies :) I especially love Hermana Johnson. We´ve already had exchanges together when she was sister training leader. This time together we didn’t challenge any members to baptism though so that was a step up haha. We had so much fun :) It’s nice to have other gringas. What’s funny is that I’ve been here so long that everything seems normal. So when I’m with another gringa its like, "Wait. This isn’t normal." So all day we kept asking ourselves, "Are we being Peruvian??..." cause now we think like these people! I love exchanges :) 
         This week I learned a TON. We had a Leader Council thing... I think that’s what it is in English... But it was great :) At the first of every month we always have one. We go to the mission home and talk about how we did the past month and how we can improve our zones. President honestly wasn’t very happy. He knows we can do better. He knows numbers don’t mean anything, but our numbers for the past few months suck. Of course he said it in a nicer way haha. But really. As a mission we only had 4 baptisms in one week. There’s over 200 missionaries! And we all took an anonymous survey a few weeks ago and he got the results back. Only 58% of our mission gets up at 6:30 AM every day (Yes I’m one of them, believe it or not lol). But the rest don’t. He was quite bold with us. He was like, "How do you expect to pray and ask for miracles every day if you aren’t willing to do your part??" We talked a lot about what we´re lacking. Hermana Rowley said, "Each one of us have the ability inside of us to do more. Each of us have the ability to follow Christ. Every day we should repent and ask what more we can do today. We´re not going to be perfect in this life, but because of Jesus Christ and the Atonement, one day we will." Then President Rowley was talking about how Nephi was asked to build a ship. He then told us, "We are building our ship! You are building your ship! Are you going to do it in your way or in the way of the Lord?" Loved that. He knows just what to say. We all left that meeting so ready to work. We then shared all of this with our zones on Thursday. We all fasted this weekend as a mission as well. There’s just so much more we can do :) Like President said, "There are good things, there are better things, and there are the best things. We are doing good things. We need to do the best things." 
         I didn’t have much embarrassment this week :) Oh wait. A little. Carlos and Teresa have two kids. A girl and little boy. Let’s just say the little boy’s hair is too long. I walked in and asked how old their little girl was and they were like, “Oh she’s 3.” So then I was like, "Oh and your other little girl?" and they go, "He´s a boy." Oooooohh. Snap. There’s no goin back from something like that. I just went red. They need to cut his hair or something... It was an honest mistake. 
         Well time to go :) Hope you all have a great last week of school :) Yay summer! Love you all so much! 

Hermana Roper 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Fear Is Good

Helllloooo :) 
         Long time, no talk eh? ;) It was seriously SO great to see everyone! I have the best family! You are all still as amazing and hilarious as I left you haha. Hermana Callizaya was like, "Your family is crazy!" Yep. But that’s why I love you all. :)
         It was a great week! My favorite week in Sullana. It’s definitely a week I´ll remember. I already told you all a little last night about the Cisneros Family, but I´ll explain a little better now. Okay so Jesus and Moises are getting baptized Sunday and allllll week we just kept thinking we needed to challenge their mom to baptism. I don’t know what happened, but we left every lesson without doing it! We had no idea why it was so hard! Well, we invited her to an activity (the talent show) and she came. Not only did she just come, but also her daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughters. She didn’t invite her husband cause she thought it was just for moms haha but next time. But it was great! They all stayed till almost midnight dancing and had a blast. 
         Well, we went back yesterday to visit and seriously, Hermana Luz pretty much attacked us haha. She was SO happy! I’ve never been hugged to the point I couldn’t breathe, but it was pretty close. Biggest hug EVER! And she wouldn’t let go! She just kept saying, “Thank you thank you thank you!” Then when we finally all get sat down she goes, "I’m convinced! Before I was 80% sure, but now I’m 100% sure. I’ve known a lot of churches, but I’m gettin on this ship! This is my last time." Ahhhh! :) She also said she´ll never forget her chocolate and milk ha! Her chocolate is Hermana Callizaya and I’m the milk :) Wait... I think I told you that yesterday... Oh well. It was funny :) 
         Then, not only did she want to be baptized, but also her daughter wants the lessons. I already told you that she has to get married first, but she said she’s determined to get married and baptized before transfers which is June 16th :) Best thing ever! (Besides getting to talk to all of you, of course...)
         On the other hand, Ana is still confused. She said this week she’s scared to make the wrong decision. She’s scared she’s gonna regret it. We´ll get her though. Give us time :) 
         I’ve been thinking a lot this week about what Hermana Ana said though. She just kept telling us she’s so scared. It made me think a lot about how I made the decision to come on a mission. Pretty sure you all remember how I just couldn’t make up my mind haha. But I remember feeling the same. I was so scared I was going to make the wrong decision! I hate making decisions! But it’s a decision I´d make a hundred more times. It’s been so worth it. I remember a quote that mom sent me that says, 
     "This is the part where I’m supposed to tell you it’s not scary. Well, it is. But fear is normal. Fear is good. It just means you’re growing." 
          It’s so true! If we never do anything that scares us we´re never gonna grow.   We´re never gonna receive the blessings God has waiting for us either. He wants to bless us, but we have to take that leap of faith and trust Him. When we get over our fear and just move forward with faith, He is there waiting with more blessings than we can even imagine. I can testify of this because I’ve experienced it. I can’t imagine the blessings I would have missed out on if I would have made the decision to stay home. I’ve had experiences and met people that are irreplaceable and that never would have happened at home. Fear is good. It just means we´re growing. Once we put our fear aside, we WILL be blessed and we´ll be stronger. :)
         Again, it was SO great to see you all! Hope you have the greatest week! Love you all SO much! 

Hermana Roper 

Monday, May 5, 2014


Helloooo everyone! 

         One transfer down in Sullana! I’m still here with Hermana Callizaya :) I’m grateful for the transfer we had and we´re ready to work even harder this transfer.
         This week was suuuuper busy. We were in Piura every stinking day! Wednesday I got to see Hermana Arce!! :) We were here in Sullana in an exchange and it was the best ever. I’ve missed her! We had lots of fun :) She’s one of the funniest people I know! One bummer though was that I totally got us lost haha. I knew it would happen sooner or later. But I preferred later :( I don’t know what happened but we ended up not arriving to an appointment because smarty pants Hermana Roper had no idea where we were... In my defense it was dark! And all the streets look the same! It was a good time though :)
         Then Friday we had another exchange and I was in Micaela Bastidas with Hermana Millano from Salt Lake. Once again, SO fun! She is so great! We had a blast. And the best part: She does hair! And she brought all her haircuttin stuff here! So of course I asked her to fix the horrible haircut I got here haha. Gotta love the perks of bein a sister training leader ;) It was a good time though, and I learned so much from her. 
         Our investigators are also doing great. What’s sometimes a bummer is that with exchanges sometimes I miss out on lessons, and it’s hard to know how they’re doing. We just end up trying to fill each other in on what’s going on in the area when the other ones away. This week Jesus and Moises came to church with their mom!! Yay!! And she loved it! :) Okay... She was almost sleeping in Relief Society, but, let’s be honest, the lesson was a little dull Sunday haha. Even Hermana Callizaya was a little sleepy, so we´ll cut Hermana Luz a break ;) It was so great to see her there though with her sons :) SO great! Tonight we´re gonna try to set a baptismal date with her :) 
         We also found a new investigator this week. Her name’s Claudia. She is 21 I think. Her husband just died 4 months ago. He was with another girl in a hotel and ended up shooting himself. Claudia´s sad, but she’s more hurt than anything. She said she’s forgiven him now because he died, but she’s really hurting that he would do that to her. She is now left with her two kids and just needs peace. That’s what she told us she wants. She is loving everything though, especially the Plan of Salvation. She is so anxious to know more! Lessons with her are a little crazy cause her family isn’t as accepting, but she’s super great. It’s sad to see how hurt she is, but we know all she needs is the gospel :)
         Reyneri also got baptized yesterday. I felt the Spirit SO strong! She came out of the water and just hugged her mom and it was just great. It’s great to see how her decision to be baptized is changing her mom as well.
         Funny story about the baptism. Well, we decided it´s not a baptism without cake, so we bought one. Well we set it in the kitchen and went to do something for only like 5 minutes, no lie. Well we come back and there were ants EVERYWHERE! They’re fast little buggers, sheesh! We didn’t know what to do. It was a huge cake. So we decided a little protein couldn’t hurt and served the cake anyway... Yep. That’s how we roll. And not one person noticed. That’s what I’m talkin about haha! I swear it’s impossible to have a baptism without something happening... But what’s important is that Reyneri is happy and that one more person entered into the waters of baptism :)
         Yesterday I also really loved testimony meeting. One RM was sharing his testimony and I loved it. He said, "I started my mission believing something, and came home knowing." It’s so true! A testimony isn’t gained in one day. It’s something that we have to strengthen every single day, and then one day we´ll look back and realize we not only believe, but we KNOW. I know God loves us. I know we have the truth. And I know there are so many people out there waiting to find what we have. I’m so grateful for the mission because I not only believe now, I know. :) 
         Hope you all have a great week! I am beyond excited to see you all Sunday!!! :D See you soon! :)

Hermana Roper