Sunday, January 29, 2012

So Yeah...

So, things have gotten a bit better...we finally got to go to the
temple today...a much needed trip (I will attach pics next week.). The
Portland temple is really beautiful and reminds me of San Diego'
good memories. ;) I am still not sure why I, Hermana Alard am on a
mission. Although I have felt pretty weird lately, not really getting
how I fit in the "mission", rolling a lot of thoughts and feelings
around in my mind and heart, I do feel more peaceful and happened upon
Words of Mormon 1:7 in the Celestial room which is good for me to
hear. I don't know why, but I've been worried about all ya'll at home
too, so bless you for your updates. I've printed them and will read
them later. That includes you Carmen...write me asap please; I don't
like being in the dark. Don't freak out, I'm not crazy distracted,
it's just better not to wonder is all. :)

As far as the Gonzalez family saga:
We saw them and the Lord knew what He was doing having us respond the
way we did, following our impressions even though we wanted to run
over there instantly, the wait was best. Earlier that day we had a
lesson with Z (who by the way has been blessed with a love for the
gospel beyond measure and baptism should be just around the corner!)
and she was wearing and adorable penguin beanie and it reminded me of
how we had told the little Gonzalez girls that we'd bring Hermana
Grass's sock monkey beanie she got for Christmas because they have
similar ones. When we got in our car after Z's, I just felt like
we should go get the beanie even though it sounded silly, I saw a scene
play in my head of Hermana Gress and I at their door and her wearing
it and when they opened, the girls being thrilled and giggling and the
rest of the family crowding to see and smiling...instantly breaking
the ice. I kept feeling impressed about doing this, but not sure if it
was revelation...but it ended up that we had time to grab it on our
way to dinner.
After dinner we went, Hermana Grass wore it and it was
like DEJAVU! The scene played out exactly as I had seen it and
everybody was loose and ready to be real. I love the Lord and I love
that he is funny. :) That is why he put me in the Alard family. ;) Our
revelation may seem out of the ordinary, but it was perfect.
 After a bit we asked what we had planned and learned that they are simply
overwhelmed. A. feels very loyal to the Catholic church and
especially right now to finish J's 1st Communion, so attending
both churches exhausted the family and they could feel the excited
pressure from the branch. A. had also misunderstood the RS lesson
about VT, thinking that everyone visited everyone every a
missionary and stressed of how she could never commit to that much
time and effort. With their family's school and work schedules,
communion commitments and the parents both getting GED's she feels
maxed out. And as far as feeling the spirit like her text talked
about...our sacrament is just new and she is used to feeling the spirit
a certain way in mass. (At least this is my interpretation...) Then
Ju jumped in and let us know how he supports the "patrona"
(A..haha.) but how he doesn't like the Catholic church, how nobody
is unified and there is a lot of hypocrisy. He never was near religion
until he met A, so he is not as attached to the traditions etc. He
also talked about how bored the kids are and doesn't think that they
learn much, so he and the kids prefer our church but are understanding
of A. and he does feel stressed out and acknowledges how tough it is
to change for all of them. So, he clarified that all they need is more
time and she agreed. We of course then asked what that meant...if they
believed what we had taught, if they still wanted to be taught and
explaining that it is no obligation, only their choice and definitely
clarified VT.
They all said how they believe in everything we have
taught and want to keep learning, saying that they will continue to
prary and read and come to church and activities when they can. None
of them liked the idea of slowing down and not being taught. Wasn't
this situation interesting?! Not at all what her text had communicated
and nobody had said a word to them that we know of. We could tell that
probably what happened was that they went to Mass and A. felt
stressed to hurry to our sacrament and then Ju said that they can't
waste our time if she is going to choose to be loyal to the Catholic
church right now and she cracked and texted us something
unlike her and they were very grateful that we understood. (You can't
serve 2 it is just a matter of time.) It wasn't that she
was dishonest, but that they are overwhelmed. Such a blessing to know
now how they all feel and be clear. We pleaded that they always tell
us how they're feeling and thinking so this confusion does not heppen
again. We are not going to give up on them...the Lord will be the one
to pressure them as long as they keep up the commitments that they
offered and we didn't even ask about praying sincerely and the BOM. I
feel so blessed that the Lord helped us handle this situation His way.
I asked if we could pray before we left and they really liked
that...Ju asked me to offer it; I was very humbled.

Other updates: We put a teenager we are teaching, Cr. on date to
be baptized 02/04/12!!! We drug him out of bed Sunday and got him to
church...mind you, we're talking 2pm church starts! Hahha, but hey! :)

Mary  was fine after reading all of her Mormon internet
research and her biggest question was what was baptism of fire from
the BOM reading assignment we had left her! Thank you Mary for reading
from the BOM on top of all of your crazy out of context research!
hahaha! So, once we answered that baptism by fire means the gift of
the holy ghost/confirmation after baptism, she said...oh, and I prayed
about a date to be baptized and the Lord gave me a dream and told me
I'm not ready...ha! She was so sincere...and we believe her and agree.
She's not quite ready, but wherever there is a will there is a way and
we are going to help her quit smoking...but the Lord is who she knows
can help her, because that's why she felt impressed to quit drinking
and have us start teaching her. :)

Ok, there's all of that...I swear the mission is just like film...I'm
just a part of a bunch of novelas! So, stay tuned for more episodes!
(They love, love, love novelas...gosh, I miss Mexico and hacking off
hair when they're mad Carm. Told Hermana Grass about that one and she

Love ya'll so much and thanks again for your updates! 

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