Monday, September 23, 2013

Hey Mommy:)
This week was good.We didn't hit our goals, but transfer weeks are always a little bit of a shake up; getting to know a new area, meeting investigators, and just working things out. Benfica is pretty cool. It's really dirty and ghetto, there isn't a single tourist spot in the area, but I'm glad to be here. My companion, Sister Briggs is really great. She's from Minnesota and she's in her second transfer, so I'm training her. She speaks amazing Portuguese and she likes to work hard. Her first transfer was really rough, she wanted to go home and she had been praying for a new companion because the first one was just not working out. Now, here I am, and I totally understand how she feels. She's great though and I think that she's starting to see the mission differently already. 
The work here is at a full on sprint. It's kind of crazy after working in an area where the work was crawling. We have four people marked for baptism in the next little while and we're teaching a whole bunch of progressing investigators, it's super crazy.SO DIFFERENT. I don't think that I could have gone from an area any different to São Miguel. Though the ward members here seem really great also.
Monday, I got here and it was rough, actually until Thursday was a little rough. Because we're by the office (not the mission home), we're kind of like a hotel. We have one room and a tiny little living room. Both very small, and yet we have 6 mattresses so that we can house others. So until Thursday we had people staying with us until they left, one of them was S. Briggs old comp- talk about awkward. It was like stepping all over someone else territory.  This week we taught some people that were actually home! It was weird because we taught the third lesson and I've hardly taught that lesson because we just didn't make it to teaching it in São Miguel, and now I've taught it 3 times in one week! We also ate at a Brasilian restaurant, like the one in Salt Lake with the people who bring around the meat. It's owned by one of the members and so every week, we and the office elders go for free! It's awesome. All the members here are either Brazilian or African, which is strange for me also after coming from an area with only Portuguese.
Because I still don't know the area too well, there isn't too much for me to talk about, but there have been a few things that have happened that were really cool! When I first got to the mission, S. Davis and I spent the night here in Benfica while we waited for our flight to São Miguel. While we were here we had the opportunity to teach some lessons and do some contacts. We contacted this woman named Asto and her daughter Jessica and S. Davis and I were just sure that they'd been baptized. Well, they weren't, but they are still being taught. Asto, at the time was pregnant, but she gave birth really early and so the baby has been in the hospital and she never has time for the lessons and hasn't come to church, but Jessica, absolutely loves the church and everything about it, she really wanted to be baptized, but she hadn't been to church either because of her mother not being able to go. Well, this week, we had church on Saturday (stake conference) and so right before, S. Briggs and I decided to go and get her. She absolutely LOVED it. She said that she felt so happy. The temple president and his wife from Madrid came and spoke and Jessica loved the idea of temples too. She was so perfect, the most well behaved 9 year old I have ever seen in church. Well I asked her during it when she wanted to be baptized and she said she was thinking the 29th of September. So, now, she's getting baptized on this next Sunday! Her mom already gave her permission and everything! How cool is it that the first person that I ever talked to in Portugal (Jessica and I walked together carrying her mom's heavy groceries and we talked about what she liked to do the first time I met her) is now going to be baptized and I'm going to get to watch?! Oh, and another cool thing is that she even remembered me! She saw me and she gave me a big hug and then she told me that she'd seen a picture of Sister Davis when she was working in the Algarve, and she also told me that she remembered that my favorite color is purple. Crazy huh?
I forgot to tell you last week, that Irmã Alexandra bought me new shoes again. Super expensive ones. It was really nice of her. They're from a sports store and they look like hiking shoes only they have straps on the top. In Ponta Delgada I was starting to lose my tan, and here it's coming back and I've got some great lines on my feet because of the straps;)

That's really cool about the card that someone sent. That was really nice of them. If you figure out who it was, tell them I said thanks a ton!

Well, I've got to go, but I love you! Thanks for everything! Have a fantastic week! Work hard with that new calling, it's one of the coolest there is. You're doing what Christ has asked us to do, to help him save his sheep. It's a fantastic calling. I hope that I can be one too when I get home. I would do it so much differently than I did the first time around.
Love always,
Sister Wach

From Ricki -   The card that Meg is talking about was a card we received this week from an anonymous person that had $100.00 in cash for Megan to put in her mission fund.  Thank you, thank you whoever you areJ  Not only did you help Megan but you also helped Ryan with his mission fund.  As most of you know Ryan has been paying $25.00 a month towards Megan’s mission (he works at Chick fil a).  So, you helped TWO missionaries  (now Rye can save 4 months worth for himselfJ) – thank you, thank you. 

The calling she is talking about is that I am now a ward missionaryJ hee, hee.

Monday, September 16, 2013


Hey Mom,

How is life? Well I have no idea what to write about and I have to write fast as I think I've probably taken to much time. My new comp still hasn't gone and so I should probably give her a chance since we only have one computer, which I'm so not gonna keep emailing like this. It's such a waste of time to only have one computer and each of you only do a little bit of time for free at the office instead of going to a library or something and then both of you doing it at the same time. But ya:).

Well, I'm exhausted. This day has been crazy. I got up before the sun and I went to the airport and my comp for the day was Elder Manzke, which was fun. He's cool. It was really sad to leave the island though. All the members were really sad (I got called the "best sister missionary to ever come to Ponta Delgada." Compliment anyone?:)) and I was sad too. It's sad to think that I will probably never go back there again or ever see those people again in my whole life. But now, I've gone from cows, an ocean view, and the biggest apartment in the mission, to skyscrapers, tons of people, and the smallest house in the mission. Well, less to clean. I've already seen more people outside today than I would in a whole week in Ponta Delgada and we haven't even started working! My new comp is Sister Briggs. I miss Sister Sandholtz and Elder Brooksby (he's my twin in the mission he said:)) but now I'm gonna get to see Elder Fuller again. I told him I really wasn't stalking him and he laughed. It will be a good transfer I think. I'm just ready to get to work! 

Well, absolutely nothing interesting at all happened this week. Serious. Nothing. This week might as well have not even happened haha. We had no new investigators (at least not who were progressing), our man who is marked for baptism was in Santa Maria all week and so he isn't progressing. Plus the fact that transfers were coming up was a bit stressful too. We ate at Bruno's house on Sunday after we found out I was being transferred and I have never been so stressed out about packing and cleaning in my whole life. Haha, Elder Brooksby was just like, "Deep breaths Sister Wach," but I couldn't do it haha. Ana and Cátia did take us out to McDonald´s though, so that was cool and really nice of them. 
Well I've got to go, I'm sorry this was so short, but P-day has been a little crazy. There is a letter on it's way though that I sent from the airport today:). 
Love you! 
Have a great week!
Love always,
Sister Wach

from Ricki - she was sent to Benfica - outside of Lisbon.  You can mail her letters/packages to the mission home and she will walk over and get them:)


Monday, September 9, 2013

Hey Mãe! 

So this was an interesting week. It was definitely a week of giggles and craziness, miracles and fallen appointments. 

I'll start with the funny stuff first:

1. "Irmazinha has a strong pimp hand"- Abraão
Yes, straight from the mouth of Abraão. Just what I needed to hear. I think my jaw dropped. Sister Sandholtz and I laughed forever after that. I don't remember exactly why he said it, but for some reason I pretended to slap the air and that's what it was to him. His description of pimp hand is that it means to slap the girl when she decides to like someone else and then drop her and get another. We almost died.
2. "I'm using wine just like Jesus would do" -investigator from Italy
Yup, I bet I'll never hear that again in my mission. We were teaching this guy, just for one lesson, but it was the craziest thing ever. He is definitely a free spirit. He wouldn't let us say "God" because he said that it was disrespectful to give "it" a name and would flinch whenever we did. Then he kept saying that if we ever really wanted to get to know God, we have his phone number. He also said that the Book of Mormon was evil. Then, Sister Sandholtz felt prompted to tell him that he should stop drinking whine, and he was like I think that drinking is one of the most sacred things we can do, I'm using wine just like Jesus would do." Then we let him pray in his own way, just so that we could get out of there. Talk about five minutes of us just sitting there with our eyes closed doing nothing until Abraão, who obviously didn't realize we were meditating, said Senhor, you can pray outloud. That was the end for us. We got out of there so fast and it was hilarious.
3. "The transmission was good."-Random lady named Sara we met in from of a bar... where we saw one of our members... awkward...
We stopped in front of a café because one of our members was outside of it and I asked him if he was going to come to the sunday night film and then invited him to come and help us teach and then this people came out of the bar and were standing there looking at us and so I starting getting nervous so I talked to them too and told them what was going on (last thing I wanted was to have a bunch of drunkards gang up on me...) and then one of them spoke english and so we talked to her and invited her to the film and gave a little of our message. Then when we were walking away she was like "The transmission was good, I really felt something there. " I'm glad we have good transmission when it comes to the spirit. 
4. We called a lady 38 times.
We had a lesson scheduled with a lady who lived really far away and so we called her first, only to learn she wasn't there and so we decided not to go, especially since the casal missionary was coming and we and the elders needed to prepare their apartment. Well, when we got done with that we got home and checked the phone and we'd called her 38 times! Poor thing. She even sent us a text and she was like, "we don't want to meet with you today, tomorrow, next week, or EVER." Oops. 
5. "Do you have a compromisso with Maria?" -José
I love José. If I never baptized anyone else in the whole mission, I'm glad it was him that was baptized. He is absolutely amazing. He's headed to Canada this coming week, which I'm really sad about. He has such a strong testimony and he helps us so much all of the time. He is also a really big jokester. Background: so there are these cookies, more like crackers, that are really big here in Portugal, not because they're good, but just because they're cheap and made here, they're called Bolachas Marias. They're also really fattening. We were with José and he asked us if we had a compromisso with Maria, and S. Sandholtz and I were both like, we're not teaching anyone named Maria, and then he said, you know, the one that comes in the packaging and makes you fat? I think it took us like a minute to get it. Awe, I'm gonna miss him so much, but he'll do great in Canada. Did I tell you that he lives across from the temple in Canada? Well he does, and so he is getting his temple recommend today and then going to the temple the day after he gets home! Wow, I wish I could just explain how amazing he truly is! You would love him:). could you tell Sister Davis (um, I mean Kelsey) that José like loves her, he said this week that she made a huge change in his life and he'll always remember her (I'm sure he'll remember me too, but he calls me Sister Walker, so you know, that's a little different;)). It was cool to hear from him.
6. Elder Brooksby predicted it.
Elder Brooksby is my twin in the mission. He says so. I'm not so sure haha. He says he will feel lost when I'm transfered. I think he was just trying to make me feel good haha. But today we went with the elders for a district activity. It was really fun. We went and climbed some big rock right off the coast that we could only climb in the morning while the tide was out, and then we had lunch. Sister Sandholtz and Elder Wilson when out and climbed this big rock and Elder Brooksby and I stayed behind. He called that one, I guess he told Elder Wilson he knew how this was gonna go, that he and I would not go and the other two would. He and I had a good gospel discussion though as we waited. He says E. Wilson and S. Sandholtz are like the sons of Mosiah, it's like their parents were told that they can climb rocks and they'll be fine and ours were told to not even think about it. E. was like " What have we got to lose if we go? Um Everything.". He makes funny expressions, it's not that funny written down, but you have to know him. So he and I awkwardly stayed back while E. Wilson and S. Sandholtz risked their lives. I heard it was beautiful though.

That's it for the funny this week, I don't doubt that there were more. Probably lots more. It was a great week for it.
1. The casal finally made it! 
They're great. Casal Phippen. They're very sweet and very old. This is their 4th mission. The first was in Brazil. They were the first couple missionary there in 8 years and the president had no idea what to do with them and so they were given an area and they proselyted door to door just like any regular missionaries! Then they served in the Marshall Islands, and then they were institute directors in N. Carolina. Their accents are a hoot. Cute little Sister Phippen bore her testimony in church and it was just so cute. It was like half Brazilian half American. When I first went for the mission, I hated the Portuguese accent and loved the Brazilian, I've done a one-eighty. But she was like "Eu... sou... grato... por... você..." as she was speaking to the congregation. It was cute to see the cute little mistakes:). I think Elder Phippen must have tried to coach her beforehand:).
2. Elsa
It was 9:30 pm and we were exahausted. It was time to be inside, but we felt like we just had to walk to the corner of our apartment and look around the corner. So we did, and there was a woman who was trying to put a big box in the garbage, and so we just knew we were supposed to talk to her. She is awesome. She's from Porto and I understood everything she said because she doesn't have the goofy Açoriano accent. She wanted to know everything about us and about the mission and the church and our lives before. She said we come from beautiful families. We haven't talked to her again, but we're gonna call her this week.
3. Antonio
I met Antonio with Sister Davis. He was riding past on his electric scooter and he just dropped it in the road to talk with us. He doesn't read a lick of anything. He's great though, and this week we had a compromisso with him because he chased us down the road because he wanted to talk to us so bad. We also marked him for baptism this week with the help of José. José did amazing. He answered all of the doubts that Antonio had and wow, I can't even believe it. Can I just rave about José some more?
4. Lurdes and Hermano
Our eternal investigator, Lurdes, is finally getting baptized! They're finally gonna get married! They came and told me the other day! And they said it was because of something that I said! I guess that when I told them that they should just sign the wedding papers and have the party later when they go to the temple because that's the real time to party, I really struck something. That was the gist of what I said, but I don't have time to say more!
I love you all! I have one minute left! Talk to you next week!
Love always, 
Sister Wach



Monday, September 2, 2013

Hey Mom,

How are things there? Sounds like it was a good/crazy week. Thanks for the pictures. Give the family my love. Thanks for everything.

Well, this week was rough. Really rough. We spent almost all of it in Lisboa, from Monday to the end of the day one Wednesday, which means we did hardly (numbers wise) anything because Tuesday and Wednesday were our days with lots of appointments with lots of good people. Lisboa was cool. I hope I get to serve there. We stayed in Lapa with the sisters there. One of the sisters was Sister Hayes, my MTC companion, so that was really cool to see her.  But, back to Lisboa. We got in late Monday night and no one was there to pick us up, so we called and woke them up to come and get us, then they dropped us off in Lapa where we spent the night. Then in the morning we went with some other girls so that they could get their residence cards and Sister Sandholtz also. Then we spent the rest of the day working in the office because there was a leadership conference going on and so they needed help. Afterwards I opened my suitcase, which was perfectly fine and everything was there. Most of the suitcases looked untouched. The mission sure spins big rumors when the president doesn't say it right out. Sister Fluckiger said that what had mostly been stolen was an ipad (someone had bought it here cheap to take home), electric razors, cameras and a few other electronics. Nothing was stolen from mine though, so that was good. One of the elders in our district though, his razor was stolen, and the poor guy, he really needs it because he got a haircut but it wasn't mission worthy and so another elder cut it, and it looks AWFUL:).Then we went back and spent the next night in Lapa again. Though we ended up having dinner with some members there, which was really awkward because we weren't invited but we had to go with the sisters anyway. They were really nice though and we had atum with natas, which was delicious. Fish is really starting to grow on me. Then the next morning we went and got my card with Sister Dudley, Sister Radvansky, and Sister Caldwell (Sisters Rad and Dudley were in my district and I knew Sister Caldwell before the MTC) and so that was really fun to get to hang out with them all day, even if it was just like 4 hours at the card place:). Then we hung out in the office for a while again and then we went to the airport. Irmão João was nice enough to pick us up from there:). 

Thursday was okay, we marked one our investigators for baptism for this coming Sunday which we're excited about. Considering we've only taught the first lesson, this is going to be a really busy week:). His name is André and he's 18. He is a great kid and we've been talking about him going on a mission also. We need more boys in our ramo because we  have a bunch of unmarried women and moças, so it's a good thing that Sister Sandholtz and I are pretty much only teaching young men between 18-24 right now haha. Then in the evening we had to do a second de licing treatment, not because she still had lice, but because those were the instructions on the package. Thankfully we are lice free! We watched a movie and ate lots of popcorn. I'm a popcorn addict.

Friday we did planning and the visita guiada of the capela, it was actually a really good one and we're really excited about the people. There was a man and his son who came who had actually been looking up online information about the church and had found the address of the church and had walked there just hoping to find someone there they could talk to about it! They live in our area, but because they are men, we're gonna let the elders teach them. The elders are very confident that they'll be baptized. We also met André there and another young man named Rodrigo that we're really excited to teach also. Before the visita though, we had an appointment with these two young men with 18 and 19 years and we were supposed to be there at the capela at 3 and we were running behind and then this random man in the road wanted to talk to us and so we were even later and by the time we got there, it was 3:15 and no one was there so we waited a little longer and no one showed up, so we decided to leave and we started walking and this lady stopped us. Turned out she was a member from Ribeira Grande and we talked with her and her son for a few minutes, and right as they were saying good bye, our appointment showed up! It was awesome. We didn't get to teach though because they had an emergency and they'd just come to reschedule (!!!) and so we're meeting with them this week, but it sure was awesome to have all those people put in our path so that we could get into contact with these two boys. Imagine if we'd been there on time.

Saturday, all of our appointments fell through except one with a man named Francisco who we were gonna mark but we ended up not doing so and will do later this week. Then we had ward counsel. Sunday was good. We didn't have any marked appointments so we went and tried to invite less actives to the movie night. None of them came, but an Italian guy that I had met two transfers ago came, and agreed to let us teach him. It was kind of a hard day to work though because there was this big procession going on in the city for the saint Sta. Clara and the streets were just filled with flowers and people. It's a little hard to talk to people when they're at the time, professing their love for some saint, plus we're not supposed to teach in front of religious processions or other churchs.

Now I'll answer you're questions:) Yes, I exchanged the stuff from my suitcase and got my makeup, though I probably won't need what I brought because transfers will be next sunday (not this coming one, but the one that is like the 16th or something like that) and it's likely that I will be transfered, which I can't decide if I'm happy about or not. I need a change, but I'll miss the members here and this area. People are taking bets on where I'm headed, right now it's either Lisboa or Braga (according to the other missionaries). So you'd probably better not send anything next week, and when you send packages they take about 2 weeks (thanks for the snickers by the way:). The senior missionaries are coming this week! They're coming on the 5th or 6th and they're moving into another apartment that we found and we're keeping ours, which is the most expensive in the mission (woot woot;)). We're in charge of preparing things, but I'm not sure what that means because we haven't got the apartment key and we haven't heard from Sis. Fluckiger about it in a while. We're excited though:).

Well,got to go! Love you tons!

Sister Wach