Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Four Months Out and Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes!

Hey how are you?! I love you!!!! Wow Park City! Have so much fun!!! Okay wow! Quick rundown of this week! 

Well this week we did a lot of packing, saying goodbye to members, divisions while my compi went to Santiago, more packing and crying and singing at baptisms, and my compi's final interview with President and everything. And Saturday night we found out the cambios! I am SUPER blessed though! I will be staying in Machali and Hermana G is going to be my new compi!! She’s from Columbia and she’s the one that knows Austin!!! Haha So not only am I blessed to be with someone I like and know, and have already worked with... But Hermana Al-Malki is staying in Machali too! She is my hero and I want to be just like her! I learn so much from her every day!!! But the sad news is Hermana Cook is leaving us! :( Man, we were so blessed these passed 2 cambios. These girls are my miracles. They have all touched my heart and helped me become better in different ways and I love them with all my heart!!! Last night we had our last noche de hogar with the four of us, and we went around and told everyone what we were grateful for and why we loved each other. okay this sounds SO CHEESY MAN!!!! hahahah I know it is but I JUST LOVE THESE CHICAS TOO MUCH!!! Needless to say there were LOTS of tears! But I am ready to work SO hard this cambio! And really lose myself in the work!!! There’s a lot to be done in Machali I know it! I just gotta do it! Haha But that was this week! I just dropped off my companion at the mission home and she is leaving on the plane this afternoon! Woooo Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes!!!! Hahaha yup! So that’s been my life!!!! 
The "Fantastic Four" (Ashley & her housemates) and friends

Last week with Hermana Darley

We had a lesson with M.  Oh, I love that girl!  And we asked, “What do you think you can do to better have the Spirit in your life? And she said “Go to church” and I was like YAAAAA!, because she recognized it!  And that’s the first step.  But she’s coming this Sunday!  Slowly but surely we will get her there!  She’s so amazing!  

(Answers to ?s:) Yes I am still healthy and keeping warm for now! And I am really happy! I really am! Sad this chapter is ending but excited for another, but at the same time sad because we were really lucky to be so close! It won’t be the same, but it’s okay! December of 2017 we are all going to meet in temple square and reunite! It’s a promise!!!! And yes, I am enjoying biking, but I broke my bike.... and I have to fix it hahaha so I gotta pay for that! 
Also... did you hear missionary sister are going to be able to wear PANTS!!! LIKE WHAT!!!! I DON'T WANT TO, but our mission is one of those missions apparently! hahahah 

Oh also one last thing! I gave Hermana Darley your contact info! Because I told her to visit you guys! Anyways in October I think she is going to conference so please invite her to our house if she needs a place to stay!! because I already told her she could! And she wants to meet you guys and just love her because I love her with all my heart okay??? :) 

And that's about it! have so much fun in Park City! Enjoy summer because its winter here and the people feed us so much freakin bread and I’m getting FAT hahahahaha yup! LOVE YOU!!!!!! 

Monday, May 23, 2016

This week was so packed with fun and miracles!

***Ashley's letter this week mostly a response to the questions I asked her in my letter***

Mother!!!!!! Halloos Mommy I loooooooove you!!!!!!! 

Man, SO MUCH happened this week I have no idea where to even start!!!  Haha but I am SO HAPPY!!!! YAY!!!! PS. you and dad are so cute! Four-wheeling buddies!!!! And it sounds like you had a super fun week! Make sure to hug Sister Bodine for me! And the Chudleighs are moving back??? YAY!!! That’s a miracle!!! Oh my gosh! And how is Anna doing?? She’s turned into quite the adventurer hasn’t she?? Aw, I love my fam bam!

Okay so your questions!! 
1. No I haven't got your next package, but I will probably get it this week! 

2. Hmmmmm requests..... man I don’t have any really! I am just super duper happy! But more Jesus cards maybe! I love giving them away! I write the steps of prayer on the back so when we teach people to pray, they choose a picture of the Savior!!! They're beautiful!!! 

3. My area.... well.... the thing is, I feel like I see lots of miracles, but at the same time nothing is really happening! We now don't have any progressing investigators because they all bailed on attending church, and we don't have anyone with a date either... but the good news is we taught TONS of lessons this week and found 5 new investigators! That's a TON for us! So there's lots of potential!!! I really hope I don't get transferred though! There is so much I have to do still here! But the odds are VERY high that'll I will stay since my compi is leaving!! 

4. MIRACLES!!!! OH my how can you ask a question like that?! There are SO many miracles EVERY DAY!!!! Haha okay but I will tell you just a few!!! SO this week! First of all we found Ma., a menos activo, and taught him, his girlfriend, and daughter, and they want us to come back! And that wasn't in our plans at all!!! Also, we had a lesson with Mo., and Hermana T was going to come accompany us and she wasn't there, but this other menos activo kid who is 19 ran into us, but he knows Hermana T, and he probably wouldn't have talked to us without her there! MAN, GOD'S TIMING IS PERFECT!!!!!! Okay but also, went on unplanned divisions on Thursday, and it was the BEST DAY EVER!!!! We taught three amazing lessons back to back!!! And one was with V, the antigua that asked us to come back and teach her! And we taught her all of lesson one and it was AMAZING!!!! And little Victoria, an investigator of the hermanas, got baptized this Saturday! And I had our regular every- 3- months interview with President this week and he is SO inspired and said exactly what I needed to hear! And I LOVE MY HERMANAS!!!! They themselves are miracles for me!!! And wow. Yup. There's a lot more but I just can't think of them right now! Oh yeah, the lady with the cake, remember her? Her name is B. and she lives with her husband and she is actually part of a church with 12 apostles and everything and they are like sharing their gospel with all their neighbors and they write down a prayer list and so basically their church is our church without the authority of God because they follow exactly what Christ established or so they think.... Haha, but they are super nice and we have a lesson with them today so we will see! But MIRACLES MAN!!!! Oh, the last miracle is that Mir. came to the surprise party we threw for Hermana Darley!!! 

So yeah! This week was so packed with fun and miracles! I had days where I worked so hard I didn't even have time to think about myself! I decided I really love service! And I am a lot happier when I just focus literally everything on others! Because these are amazing people I get to work with!!! But yeah! This week we found people, learned to make Calzones Rotos with Hermana Solange, laughed, cried, sang at a baptism, Crashed the ward 80s dance without actually dancing, had an amazing interview with President, found this burger place with the Hermanas and they have a burger that is SO GOOD called the Gringa :) and I somehow managed to plan and pull of a surprise party for my companion!!! What an incredible week!!!! 

Anyways you can add anything you want from my journal!!! (So this next part is added from her journal pages about the surprise party):
…Then we followed them into the gym, then the Hermanas turn on the lights and BAM!  Everyone’s there sitting in a circle!  A bunch of members! And Mir. and P!  And she started almost crying because she was so happy!  She had no idea!  And I was like, “That’s why I made you go into the gated community” and she just laughed and laughed!  Oh man, it was so funny!  And then for the “message” of this “noche de hogar” us 6 missionaries acted out missionary situations, like the kisses from men, messing up the language, not being able to enter the house, contacting with a cat, homemade remedies, etc!  Oh, it was so funny!  Everyone laughed and Mir. was like, “All of those situations happened in my house!” Haha…but it’s true!  Then Elder Cabanay and Hermana Darley gave their “last testimonies” kind of thing and it was super sweet!  Then we had treats!  And everyone signed these giant super cute posters that we made for them!  And we took LOTS of pictures!  And Mir. and P had presents for her!  And it was so super sweet and so fun!  We just laughed and laughed and Hermana Darley felt so loved!  YESSS! SUCCESS!!! …Everything turned out SO beautifully and perfect!  God knows us!  He has a plan!  There’s a reason we are in the circumstances we are in, so let’s make the best of it, shall we?!  I love this gospel!  I never stop learning!  It’s just too amazing!

But I LOVE YOU MOM!!!! I love you so much! Thank you for all your support!!!! I want to be a missionary like you someday!!!! Because you were amazing! Oh the last miracle this week! I was struggling with being bold, like starting conversations and everything, so I was praying really hard for the Lord to help me, and he totally has! My confidence is growing and I can feel him giving me courage!!!! But then again, I just have to remember... when it comes to someone's eternal salvation, nothing should be scary!! Because they need what I have!!! YEAH!!!! I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!!!!! 

Monday, May 16, 2016

A week of miracles!

Hola Everybody I Love!!! 

I know I said last week was a week of miracles but man, this week blew last week out of the water!!! FOR REALS!!!! Cualquier cantidad de milagros en serio!!! I am just grateful enough to be able to witness them! But I don´t have time for all of them so I will just share three of the biggest real quick!

 First of all, we went to go see V, an antigua investigadora and We have tried many times in the past, she wasn´t a part of our plans that day, but my super inspired companion said we should try, and she answered the door! And before we could say anything she say ¨Hermanas, mire...¨ which usually means the next thing they are going to say is thanks for coming, but I´m not interested, but, instead she said she is really interested in taking the lessons again! And she wants to bring her boyfriend to listen too, and could we come back on Tuesday? And we could not pull out our agenda´s fast enough!! It was a miracle! And she said yeah! I was almost baptized, but then I just got so busy, but I really would like to get back into it! And so of course we were super happy! Miracles!

 The second miracle was when Hermana Cook and Hermana Al-Malki were heading back to the house and one of our neighbors flagged them down, and came back out with a big cake! She said she was praying the other day to see who in our neighborhood she could serve and she finished praying, and we were the first people who came to her head! And she made us a cake because we are far from home and she just wanted to serve! Wow! A heart of gold! And apparently she doesn´t even have a religion! We couldn´t believe it! So we are going to return her plate today and talk to her more! I can´t wait! I just thought of the quote in Preach my Gospel that says, ¨The Lord has prepared people to receive his gospel, and he will lead you to them, or lead them to you.¨ He has definitely been leading them to us and I am so grateful! 

Last miracle I´m going to share was this week at church on Sunday! First of all B came for the first time! With her two grandchildren! But the miracle was all the Menos Activos that came to church! We had all sorts of Menos Activos and in particular two that we have been working with that haven´t come to church for a long time! My joy was absolutely full when I saw them walk through the doors! Miracles. That´s what the mission is! Miracles! 

Okay but Investigators! B is now progressing! We are trying to get her to have a spiritual experience for herself, so she can really feel the spirit, but she came to church this week! A great first step! With M, we weren´t able to visit her this week, but we have an amazing lesson planned for this week! And with J, we have a lesson with him tonight, but yesterday we had an amazing Noche de Hogar with him and a bunch of the JAS from our ward!

They are really fellowshipping him and it´s been amazing! They were inviting him to institute and he seriously is considering going! Even though he still doesn´t completely believe in God, but he is so full of the light of Christ! We are going to keep working hard with him! But that´s about it! We had an amazing lesson with Roberto this week about the Book of Mormon and he kept saying over and over ¨Le amo el Libro de Mormon, le amo, le amo!¨ Oh it was so amazing! And if all goes as planned he will get his first calling this week! 

Well I am doing good! I have the best companion in the world! We work so well together! It´s amazing how like in sync we are! We think the same things like ALL THE TIME!!!!! I think it must be the spirit! That must be it!!!!  And I just love her! Also, this week we changed the rules for ¨Spanish mode! ¨ For every English work I say during the day, I have to do a push up for it at night! The first night I had to do 19 push ups, and so basically either I am going to learn Spanish, or I am going to have really big muscles! Haha but it´s actually helping me a lot! I absolutely love the mission! I learn so much every day from all the people I am working with! And if there´s one thing I know, it´s that our God is a God of miracles, and there is no way they have ceased! He´s there every step up the way! Never doubt that!!! 

Okay well I gotta run! I hope you have the best week ever! And never forget how much this little Chilean loves you!! 

Con mucho amor, 
Hermana Christensen :) 

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Mother's Day skype, joy in serving members and success with church attendance!


I can´t believe I talked to you yesterday!!!! It´s so unreal!!! But it was so much fun!!! Man I really just have the best family and there is just no doubt about that!!! Not one bit!!!! I was so happy and so full of love when I got to talk to you guys yesterday!!!! 

With that being said this week has been SUPER great!!! Lots of work with members, we came to the rescue with Hermana S and Hermana P this week, they have such hard lives, it’s heartbreaking... but it´s good to know that I can help in some small way!!! We helped Hermana P move her whole house in 2 days, and we just helped Hermana S by listening to her, but man. I am so grateful for my family!!! Family lives are hard down here!!! 

This week was AMAZING in Sacrament meeting though! M attended our ward for the first time! And J came back! This time in a collared shirt and suit jacket!!! AWWW!!!! And he really had a good time with the Young single adults!!!! AND Roberto helped bless the sacrament for the first time!!!! It was like Christmas morning!!!! 

We had lots of fun this week making Mother’s Day cards for some of our investigators, and doing some Noche de Hogars with some less actives!!! It was so fun!!! But man.  I love missionary work!!! I love being here with all these amazing people and their amazing testimonies!! I learn so much from them every single day!!! I am trying my best to be my best! But at the end of the day, this church is just so true! And that´s all I have to say about that!! :) 

I love you all and hope you have the best week ever!!!