Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Love Family

Hey family!!!!       

I just want you to know with our family growing, I still love each and everyone of you. Even if I don't know you all so well. If my siblings love you, then I love you too!!

Hey sorry, I don't have time to write a big letter because the university is closing... but I promise I will write a hand written letter this week. I love you all and hope you have a great week. So, so sorry!

Con Amor Siempre,

Hermana Harris

Monday, May 18, 2015

A Singing Missionary

Hey family!

This week was crazy!! But I am thinking it is less crazy then your guys, Hahaha ;) We had zone conference this week! Elder Cornish of the seventy was amazing! He is the area president of the Caribbean here. He talked to us about conversion! How our conversion and the conversion of the converts is everything. We are only here as part time missionaries; the real missionaries are in the houses. They are the ones that are full-time, or all life missionaries.

It was amazing to see how strong he is in the gospel! He and his sweet wife do so much for the missionary work here! He has helped out our mission and the island in so many different ways! I love conferences because it really feels that even when studying and living the gospel each day my spiritual tank still gets to the point where it is getting low. It is always at this point where a conference comes and just fills me to the top!

I think the funniest thing with this week is that I had to sing in another choir. I don't know when this island will learn I really can't sing very well. Hahaha! Our ward decided to sing as our talent for a Stake Relief Society activity. Really, this is in no way our talent. Actually, it is better if everyone just keeps to singing in the shower. But hey, it was going to be fun right? We started to practice for the past two weeks. I really think that they had to have picked the hardest song in the hymn book! But we got a less-active that is a professional singer to help us! She literally was with every single person listening and helping each one of us improve. We actually sounded good by the end. Miracles really happen people!!

With another transfer passing by, saying bye to more missionaries and getting to know new ones comes with a new adventure. Sister Archila is finishing her mission this week. It has been crazy to have grown and seen her grow with this past 4 1/2 months together in Ponce! I am so happy to have known her. She is one of the strongest converts I have ever met! She really has the biggest desire to serve the Lord. I can only hope that in my last couple months that I can be just like her then I will be a great missionary. It is so crazy how fast the mission flies by, I just hope this last bit slows down a little bit!!

I love you all so so much and hope that you all have a splendid week!

Con Amor Siempre,

Hermana Harris

Monday, May 11, 2015

Greener Grass

Hey family!!! 

I just have to say it was amazing to see your faces yesterday!!! I miss you all so much and it was so great to be able to talk to you all even to just tell you about my day and hear about yours!! 

Another week has gone by. Honestly, this was the hardest but most blessed week!! I had been a little bit distracted because last Monday, I received the news that Kody (a boy Saydi and Haleigh knew from Elementary School) had committed suicide. It was so hard to think that someone at 16 yearsold could make a decision so severe. It was so sad to think that maybe there was even something small that someone could have done to help him. Maybe if he knew the love of his Savior. Or if he could have known that someone knows how he felt and can help him! So my week definitely didn't start on a great note…

I just felt a deep sadness come over me this week. It was disheartening to think that everyone doesn't have the chance to know of His gospel in this life to make things better. For this, I am so grateful for Sister Pardo. She really tried everything to try to get me out of this weird funk. This week was one of the most important for our investigator as we where preparing for his baptism. 
It seemed that Satan was fighting really, really hard against us.

Juan Manuel got food poisoning one day so he was having trouble concentrating because he was so sick. Thank Heavens, it only lasted a day! All week long, he kept saying that he was completely ready to start this new life, to start a life devoted to Christ and to never look back. He has had a troubled past in drugs, family problems, and a lot of difficulties with getting a job. So the gospel for him really came at the perfect time!! He had never told us but before the baptism he bore his testimony that he felt that in the past 6 months that there was a bad spirit in him. It was incredibly strong to see him crying after he got baptized to know that through Christ and the priesthood that he can be clean and be separated from this bad spirit. 

The bishop, while he was sharing his testimony, had the impression that he should be given the Holy Ghost that same night, not the next day to be sure that he has been completely free from the spirit. It was an incredible blessing that they gave him as Juan received the Holy Ghost. The next day in church the bishop interviewed him and gave him the priesthood. Juan told us that every hour in church that he was there, he just felt like the spirit stronger and stronger. He was to the point of bawling by the end of sacrament. It was so nice to see someone that really has changed their whole life and as seen the blessings in his first day. Just think how many more, he will see in the eternities.

So what started out to be a rough week was really a week full of blessings. Sometimes, life needs to start with a trial to be able to see the green grass on the other side. I really got to see the green grass and all the blessings that come with one person making their life more devoted to Christ! The cherry on top this week was that I got to see my beautiful family!! It was so amazing to hear all our your voices and know that you all are doing okay!! I love each and everyone of you!! I can't wait till Christmas when I can talk to you all at the same time! 

Con Amor Siempre,

Hermana Harris

Monday, May 4, 2015

Always a Missionary

Hey family!!  
Wow, the week has really flown by!! We really have had another week full of miracles!  

First, the grand news is that we have a baptism this Saturday May 9th. His name is Juan Manuel. We have been working with him hard for about three months. He has been incredible!! I have truly seen his faith grow in Christ. I know without a doubt that he is ready to take this jump to take upon himself the keys to open the gate to return to our Father in Heaven.
Wow, it has been an incredible journey to actually get to teach him the past two months. He has been in and out of living at the hospital on the bed ide of his sick father, so he was always very difficult to find. Now, he is more then ever ready to take the baptismal covenant. I am so excited to help him and to be there for Sister Pardo's first baptism!! It will be so great to see her start her mission in her first transfer with a baptism. Aren't baptisms just the best!?!

News from the island…everything is smoothing sailing! We have had a great week working hard to get more help from the members. Each day, in the area that we are working, we have been stopping by to make visits to the members just say hi and to try to leave with a couple of references to track. We also have made it a goal to visit the bishop every week or every two weeks to create a confidence in us to know that he can trust us with the less-actives in this ward. It really has been making a difference to see him open his doors and talk to us. When we started, it was only the wife talking to us and we would only get to talk to him for like 10 minutes. But the last time we visited, he told us all about their history in the church and callings. We are slowly but surely winning his confidence! Really this work can't function without the complete confidence of the bishop. I am so appreciative of the opportunity to work hard next to great leaders in this ward. Sometimes, it feels like we are all running in the same race but it just takes a while for everyone on the team to realize that we aren't running separately for ourselves but that it is a relay race. We have to pass on the baton but it there are times we want to hold on to the baton for longer then necessary. That is one thing that I have really learned here in Ponce. 

There are times that I personally have thought “Well, we can work all day long teaching people. We don't really need the members. We just need then to, on Sundays, help invite them into the family.” But really it is everyday that we need the members. First, we need them to show us the area. We are foreigners in a land that they have lived in their whole lives. Second, they can tell us more then anyone who will accept and reject our message, who they feel may be ready now for our message. I have really learned what it means for it to be every member’s duty to help in missionary work, not just the missionaries. I feel like I really was a horrible member before and can't wait to be the member that can help in every phase of missionary work just like a missionary but with a normal life. Hahaha!

So, I can't wait to see you all this Sunday!! I am more then excited to be able to talk to you all and get to hear your voices!! I love you all so so much and hope you have a splendid week. I challenge each of you to be the member that I want to be. Help the elders in our ward with a reference to someone you know that could benefit from this gospel!! 

Con Amor Siempre

Hermana Harris

PS Only nine months to go!!