Hermana Millington - Notes from New Jersy

Friday, July 8, 2016

The Week of Jukes - July 11, 2016

July 11, 2016
Literally we only had three lessons actually come through this week --- but it was great! Those lessons all went well and we had some good finding time :)

So Monday! Yay America! People are so patriotic here, there are American flags everywhere. It totally rocks. That afternoon we went to a little park in Brick and met the rest of our zone there. The zone leaders cooked some meat on a little grill (it was a miracle it actually cooked), and we had watermelon and brownies and stuff. We played a fun game of signs and just hung out together. It was super nice! I love this zone and I love being secluded from a lot of other missionaries. Then we went and had an awkward doorstop lesson with a lady in High Point before we went to the Bolaños' house. It was awesome, she made us this Peruvian potato and chicken dish! Peruvian food on the Fourth of July :) it was way good though! And her brother was there with his son, who aren't members. So that was cool to talk to them a little bit, although he totally kissed me on the cheek. Such a normal Hispanic thing, hahaha. And on man, Hermana Bolaños gave us these olives. And they were so bad. But Sister Smith had eaten both of hers, so I thought she liked them! I offered her mine and she totally ate it. We were talking later and she said "oh man, those olives were HORRIBLE." But she loved me so much she ate that nasty olive :) then we went to Point Pleasant beach! There were quite a few people there, but we got a good spot on the sand and watched some fireworks. Then we walked down and put our feet in the water! That was Smiths first time ever touching the ocean :) we took pictures, but you can't see anything, it's pitch black! But it was good anyway. It was crazy to stay out until 11, we were SO tired!

On Tuesday we found a great new service opportunity at Serenity Hospice, talking with hospice patients who don't have anyone visiting them. And there are centers all over New Jersey, so we can keep volunteering with them after we leave this area! So we're pretty excited about that. I'm hopeful I meet some funny old people. We also had our first English class!! But someone forgot to leave the keys for our classroom at the rec center, so we had it in the main room with people playing pool and the tv on. Haha but everyone was so respectful and nice! And our little students sang the ABCs, no shame. It was so awesome. 

Wednesday we went  to the family history center and to People's Pantry. We talked with Matt and Chad (our JW friend). We were talking a little religion and Chad said "I don't want to offend or anything, but honestly, there is no way your whole religion came from animals in the woods. I just can't believe that. Like that Smith guy saw a vision in the form of a bear or something? There's just no way." And we were like "yeaaaaah, we'll bring you pamphlets next week." Haha so that's what we'll be doing on Wednesday! And hopefully he'll answer some questions we have. It'll be interesting!
So Thursday was a cool day. We had an appointment with Gerardo, but literally two minutes after we started driving, he texted and said he might not be home.. So we stopped in a parking lot and talked about if we should still go and hope he's there in time or just reschedule. It had been like two weeks since we'd seen him! But we prayed about it, and felt better about just going back home to do weekly planning there. But man, I was feeling a little down about it. So I prayed and said "Heavenly Father, we're trying to use our time wisely, so we aren't going to see Gerardo today. Please give us a lesson and a new investigator today because of that little sacrifice." So we were driving home, and we saw the other sisters walking home from the church. We started thinking about it, and remembered they don't have working AC in their apartment! And it's like 500 degrees outside! So we invited them over to do their weekly planning in our apartment and sleep the night there. And they eventually called President and got their AC fixed, but I think it was nice for them to have a cool place to get it all done. But we totally wouldn't have seen them walking and thought to invite them over if Gerardo hadn't juked at that time. Tender mercies! Then, at the end of our English class, we shared a verse from the Book of Mormon. And this guy Felipe stayed behind to talk to us. We totally thought he was going to ask us out or something (it happens too often. Ugh.), but he asked about the Book of Mormon! We we're super caught off guard and stumbled through an explanation, but we have an appointment to see him Tuesday! So prayer is real, folks. When we give up something that might be good and pray for something better, the Lord comes through. He knew we were trying to use our time and resources wisely, and He blessed us (: 

On Fry-day for lunch we had deep-fried Oreos. Ugh. Good, but so bad. And then we had a good lesson with Maria and Antonio! And there's is special trip to the open house at the Philly temple for missionaries and their investigators July 24th, and they totally want to go with us! Now we just have to find a ride.. But isn't that awesome?! They'll love it! We're so excited :) we went to our next lesson, but he wasn't home. But his roommates were, and they let us in! We shared a video about Christ, and they started asking really good questions! About who he was and what he did exactly, and will he really come again and how do you know. I love when people ask how we know (: but it was sweet! We got a return appointment, and we can't wait to go back and answer their questions! 

On Saturday, (HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHLOE), we had our little English class with a couple new students, one from Haiti! Which is interesting, because a lot of our teaching is translating Spanish to English.. But I don't think she speaks Spanish... And then we finally saw the Vegas! Miracle. It went well, they're still working on that baptismal date! We'll see if we can get them there, I've got faith :) then a little boy in our branch, Mosiah, had his baptism! It was so awesome! The baptism itself was lovely, and the family spoke and bore their testimonies and it was all really good. When it was over, they opened the dividers in the gym to an MMA birthday party. No joke. John Cena a everywhere. Hahahaha we were dying!! Don't worry, we got a few pictures :) but there was a really good turn-out, and it was fun to be there with our branch. Also a sweet John Cena piñata. Oh man. Then we got to meet with Yolanda and Manuel Hernandez! Miracle! I've been trying to meet with them forever!! It was humbling to go into their room and teach them a little bit. They're recent converts, but they haven't been coming to church. But they live in this little house with a couple other families, and all they have is one room with one bed for the two parents and their two daughters. They have clothes and food and everything all in that one bedroom. It's amazing to me to see situations like that and see the closeness of their family. And to think that I grew up with such a nice strong family and beautiful home and I never even imagined that people had so little. But they're such a sweet family, and they gave us bananas and mangoes as we left. We made a delicious smoothie that night and marveled at how blessed we are to have what we do. 

On Sunday we found Rafael and his family again! We haven't been able to meet with them because they've been busy, but we finally just showed up at their door and they were there! So they let us in, sat us down, and gave us watermelon. Ha!

I love them! They also gave us little cheese cracker snack things and a bowl of chicken soup to take home. But the thing about Hispanic chicken soup is that the chicken isn't broken up. Literally, it's a chicken wing floating around in broth with carrots and zucchini. So that's fun to eat. But it was so sweet! And Rafael has such a strong testimony and desire to learn. We're excited to go back and see them again. They're the cutest little family, they have an amazing spirit in their home. 

We're headed to the Jersey Shore here in a little bit, and that'll be way fun! I'll make sure to send pictures when we get back :) 

I love you all with ALL my heart! The church is true, the book is blue. And it's also true. And the best book on the planet. I've decided Teancum is the COOLEST. Seth would have totally been a warrior like Teancum. Anyways, love you guys:) I'm praying for you and thinking about you! 

Hermana Millington 

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