Monday, January 15, 2018

Week 45 - Aruba

Hola!

We had a wonderful week this week, but i can't remember too much because we have been TIRED!
First of all.... HAPPIEST OF BIRTHDAYS EVY!!! I LOVE YOUUUUU!!!! It sure is great to be eight, huh??

Big points and fun experiences:

-David received the Priesthood and will be baptizing his son, Juandavid on Saturday!!!! :)

-Marlien's husband (one of my recent converts, she is from Suriname) would hardly even talk to us while we were teaching her. Now? He is being taught by the elders and has a baptism date for the 10th of Feb!!! SOOO AMAZING!

-My testimony is thriving!! Through this gospel and through the Book of Mormon these people can have all the answers that their souls are looking for. We were teaching this man named Edwardo and he asked us a really amazing question. He asked us " why, Why, WHY did God, the creator of ALL, not send His disciples or SOMEONE to the other continent???" It was amazing!  Sister Davidson and I just smiled really big...  Also, earlier in the week we were teaching someone who lost their sister to cancer a couple of years ago. She asked us an amazing question. She explained that she had asked this question to sooo many different people in different churches and no one has given her a straight up answer.  She asked about how everyone says that when someone dies they just go straight to heaven, and how that has never made sense to her because she knows that there will be a judgement day. She wanted to know what happens in between Heaven and the time of death. It was amazing, and we finally had her answers. Something she has been looking for for a long time.

-The Old Testament is one of the best books ever. I love it so much and read it in my free time. I am such a nerd now. Happier this way though :)

Life is so good and I am happy! The gospel changes peoples lives and i get a front seat showing of it everyday! :) I hope you all have a great week. I love and miss you all so much!!

-Sister Woodbury
 
                                                  just received this, from earlier last year

                                                             David and Juandavid

Monday, January 8, 2018

Week 44 - Aruba

Hello!!

I dont have too much to add since I just emailed on Wednesday but it was still a super good week!! A couple of updates on those we are teaching:  Juandavid is doing amazing and is so excited for his baptism!! We went to their house on Saturday night and they put together a sweet little FHE style dinner for us to say thank you to us. they are soooo sweet. David is weird... He really wants to finish his tattoo sleave and even though we told him straight up that he shouldnt he is working on it. It is almost completely tattooed.  He also didn't come to church the past two weeks because he hasnt been feeling well either time.. I dunno. Pray for him. Everyone else is doing AMAZING though! like WOW! 

Also, this week we contacted someone named David from Venezuela (but we teach them in English) and we had a lesson with him and his wife! They are SO amazing! We had a beautiful lesson with them and they just have sooo much potential! David has a huge beard and it reminds me a bit of my brothers. Their English is so good. Crazy. They are amazing.

We also contacted a guy named Calo on saturday who came to church on sunday! unfortunately since we had never taught him before and everyone talked about President Monson and then the gospel principles class was about temples.  A lot of new things for him. They even mentioned the degrees of glory in the celestial kingdom in class. It was so awkward. I felt so bad! he was in good spirits though and is really cool!

Christina was able to make it to church this week as well! She is doing well, but is really used to having dreams as answers. It is really interesting. She knows Joseph Smith was a prophet but doesn't know about the BOM yet... She always tells us her dreams and I feel like she wants us to pull a Joseph and interpret her dreams for her! Its kinda fun!

As for Leasbeth....Ugh her life is so hard and we had no idea. She just ran away from home with all her kids and is living in a dump now because her father is really scary and abusive. we had no idea. she is going through a lot right now, and so is her mom Elbe. Please keep them in your prayers.
 
That is all I have from this week but I love and miss you all and I hope you have a great week!

-Sister Woodbury




 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Week 43 - Aruba

We had a great week this week. Who knew that new years here is so crazy! Basically any kind of fireworks are legal here and WOW! I think my ears are still ringing. this place is crazy. They are STILL using fireworks all the time even though it is the 3rd! We have heard that it is to get away all of the bad spirit's from 2017 and welcome 2018 with a fresh start. something like that. All of Aruba is covered in red paper from the left over fireworks and it always sounds like a war! Scary/fun on the bikes for sure!

As well, David and Melissa gave us a really sweet Christmas gift! They invited us to a super cool restaurant called Texas de Brazil. It was soooo good. Buffet with 13 men walking around with huge things of meat that they cut off and put right on your plate.  It is soooo fun! We felt like queens. Plus they didn't even make us pay for it because they had some kind of really nice coupon for it. David's dad works there so I don't know how they made it work but it was awesome!

As well we have so many really cool investigators. We are teaching two people from Venezuela right now, Daniel and Nerwins. They are so awesome. When we got there yesterday they had some cookie thingys waiting for us on top of their pamphlets and everything. Daniel looks like Vin Deasel (how do you even spell that) and they are just SO cool. 

We also have Juan David on date! He is the son of David and Melissa and he is doing great! He is so excited for his baptism!
Also.... I hit my 10 month-aversary! so weird!!!

The following is a portion of the letter I sent to my mission president because I don't have too much time to write my big emails! Sorry!

The area is doing so great! We are teaching some amazing people and we have 2 baptismal dates at the moment. They are both so promising. I am so grateful that I will be able to stay here to continue to teach these amazing people. I am blown away by how much this gospel changes lives and I love the opportunity I have to witness the changes happen in the peoples' lives here in Aruba. 
Sister Davidson is so great! We are so happy we get to stay companions for this next transfer! We have been working really hard and really trying to follow the Lord's will. We have really good unity and we are constantly having spiritual experiences every time we do companionship study and every time we teach a lesson. She is doing amazing and is such a great example for me!
Wow my testimony is growing so much. I know God knows us so perfectly. What we do and don't understand, our doubts, our fears, our strengths, our desires, everything. He knows! I learn that everyday during personal study. It is amazing.
My spiritual experience this week was when we asked our investigator Leasbeth to be baptized. Wow! We weren't able to see her for a while because she has a hard time remembering our appointments, but we were finally able to see her one night when we stopped by. We were able to sit down and have a catch up lesson with her. When we taught her the Book of Mormon she really just wanted to read from the beginning, so we invited her to do so. We followed up with her reading and she couldn't remember where she had left off because she didn't have her book with her. We gave her our book to look through and after looking for a moment she said she was in chapter 20, and of course we immediately thought she was talking about 1 Nephi. Then she said, "yep, chapter 20 of Mosiah." Our jaws dropped. She hasn't had that book for very long! Then we just kept talking to her and about the things we had taught her and she remembered everything so perfectly. The spirit told us that we needed to ask her to be baptized and so we did, and she was SO excited. She was just beaming with joy. She said that it would be an honor, and then she yelled in to her house in excitement calling to her mom to tell her the good news! The only thing is that she is in her 30's. Haha Leasbeth is so amazing and loves this gospel. She is already being a missionary and sharing this message with all of her friends.
I love being a missionary!

-Sister Woodbury
 
                                                             Caught in the rain...again!

                                                                  New members' dog
                                                                Delicious improv!
                                                        
                                                   New Years dinner with member family

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Week 42 - Aruba

HELLOOOO EVERYONE!!!
I hope you all had a very merry christmas and I wish you all a happy new year!! This week has been so fun! I dont remember anything hahaha! First of all though, today I have a lot of lil shoutouts to do!:
Happy Birthday Danielle!!!!!!!!
Happy birthday little Chris!!!!!!!
Happy Birthday Cierra!!!!!!
Happy Anniversary Chris and Aly!!!!!
I love and miss you alllllll!!!!
I really dont have too much to say today but we had a really good week and a fun christmas!
David got baptized this week and that was awesome! his whole family coudnt make it but it still had pretty good attendance after about 20 minutes in thanks to the members :) That family is doing AWESOME and we just started teaching their son who is dying to get baptized. Everything is going great here and i am happier than ever!!! We got to spend christmas day with the terrones family and melissa and david all together! that was sooo fun! Those two families changed soooo much. It is AMAZING to see their change. Thank goodness for the gospel! All is well over here in aruba and we are seeing lots of success. 
Oranjestad is doing so great! We are teaching a lot of Arubians which is something I have never experienced before. Aruba is truly become elect and the Lord really is ripening the field and I am so grateful to be here harvesting it. We have some amazing investigators. 
I Just love this gospel so much. It has sincerely changed my life. Right now my personal studies are really fun because for the past 2-3 months I have been reading the Old and New testament, the Book of Mormon Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price all at the same time, along with preach my gospel. It I have been able to learn so much. At first it was a little bit stressful but now it is just SO fun. My testimony has sky rocketed as I have been doing this little challenge I have set for myself and I have spiritual experiences everyday because of it. 
Anywho, have a great week! I love and miss you all so much!

-Sister W

Family:
I LOVED SEEING YOU! SORRY I CRIED THE WHOLE TIME!!!! i promise i am SUPER happy even though it didnt look like it! I am not even homesick at all either. I dont really know why i cried the whole time but oh well! I love and miss you all and i hope you have a happy new year!
I love you dad, mom, britt, allen, will, chris, jack, clay, spence, chris, aly, evy, aby, millie, lizzie, chase, kim, mason, linley, carson, mimi, brooks, felicia, and buns! MUAH!
-schmal
 









 

Monday, December 18, 2017

Week 41 - Aruba

So sorry, I forgot to bring my camera today but you will be getting pictures next week!

Okay wow! To be honest this was one of the hardest and most stressful weeks of my mission and almost everything possible that could have gone wrong, did.  Buuuut guess who is still all smiles!  No reason to not smile when you have the gospel in your life!  :) And Melissa got Baptized!!!!  SHE IS SO AMAZING!!!  She is going through a LOT right now and she and David are struggling sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo muchhhhhhhhhhhh. She is still so strong and so incredible. We had a lesson with her where we just had her explain her experience when she was baptized and confirmed and it was great!  She shared with us her life story. She kept mentioning things like "that's why I love this church" and "I am never going to leave this church, especially for my kinds." It was amazing. David should be getting baptized this Saturday and then we are going to start teaching their 11 year old son so he can be baptized!  We have a lot of really cool investigators. 

Well, as I mentioned, this week was really difficult. Luckily, our loving Heavenly Father still blessed us with tender mercies though out the week!  My favorite one was in a lesson with this lady named Christina.  We were just teaching the Restoration and she just started talking for about a minute to tell us how she had had darkness and confusion in her mind for such a long time and how we are just helping her clear everything up.  She kept thanking us and she talked about how the work we are doing is so important. We really needed to hear that and God knew that, because he knows each of us perfectly.  I know He is there and I know He loves us so much. I am so happy to be here, especially in this Christmas Season focused on Christ.


I am so happy to be here on my mission and I would just like to stay out here forever. I love it!! 

Merry Christmas everyone!  Keep your thoughts focused on Christ and be a missionary!!

I love and miss every single one of you!!!

Love,
Sister Woodbury

Monday, December 11, 2017

Week 40 - Aruba

Hola!

Well this is going to be really short because I am already almost out of time buuuuut Hello!!!! First of all... HAPPY BIRTHDAY MILLIE!!! I love you!!

Anywayyyy.... This week was so good! This week we had several amazing experiences about prayers of faith being answered! The main one i want to talk about is with our investigator names Leasbeth. She is so amazing. We taught the restoration part two lesson to her and she loved it. We invited her to pray about the prophet Joseph Smith, and when we came back the next time she had prayed! She could not stop talking about her experience. She said she just had this feeling and she almost started crying and she just knew. She explained that it was something different than she had ever experienced. She told us that later that day she was already kind of beginning to doubt and then when she was thinking about it the same feeling came over her and she said "Oh nope sorry Heavenly Father. Okay! He is a prophet!" It was so amazing to see her prayer of faith be answered. My testimony sky rocketed as she was explaining her experience. I know God answers every prayer and I know Joseph Smith was a prophet. 

As well, Melissa passed her baptismal interview!!!!!! We are so excited for her!  David decided he was going to be baptized on the 23rd so that is our new goal. Everything is going great over here and we are working hard :)  David has been weeding off of his addiction and today is finally trying to completely drop it. Pray for him!  He wants to change SO badly!  All of these people are pretty much spiritual children so it is so fun to watch them grow. David has been reading the BoM like crazy! He is in 2nd Ne. 10! He is so awesome! 

Well, not too much more to add! We had a branch Christmas party which was really fun! It started at 6:30, nobody showed up until around 7:30 and that is when we started the little show.  We ate at 8:30, and they all stayed there dancing until 11. People were there cleaning up until 1 am!!!!! Latinos are CRAZY! I love them.

Well, I hope you all have a great week!! I miss and love every one of you, and so does our Heavenly Father, so pray to Him! :)
 
With love,
Sister Woodbury 





Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Week 39 - Aruba

Well.....I am officially halfway through my mission! SOOOO CRAZY! Fastest 9 months of my LIFE. It is so weird because the days seem long, the weeks seem longish until they are over, the months FLY by! I dont understand but that is how it works haha! I truly have never ever been happier doing anything else ever. Mission's are the best. And this week was GREAT!!! Well, the beginning of the week was actually pretty rough but the end of it was awesome, and i can only remember the end so all is well haha!  Buuuuut really this week was great.

First of all, we had zone conference yesterday and wow it was awesome! One of my favorite zone conferences. Something President Egbert does is start talking about how you are preparing to go home beginning your first day in the mission field. Whenever he has said that i have always thought, "well its not like that day will every come", but this time i got sadddd!!!  I love it here! I  dont wanna leave!  The ideal situation would be just to bring all of my family over here with me! Zone conference was amazing though. Like wow.

Also.... I believe it was my cute little nephews birthday yesterday, so HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY CLAYTON!!! I LOVE YOU!!!! 

Anywho... So this week I don't even remember what happened. I Do remember though that Melissa is doing AWESOME and is so excited for her baptism in two weeks! David? well... he is struggling. we don't think he will be baptized on the 16th but he will at some point. He is dealing with a challenge and he just doesn't feel prepared spiritually. We actually haven't seen him in a while, almost a week.  Buuuut we had some awesome experiences with Melissa this week! First of all, we brought this member named Brother Sandoval with us to one of our lessons with her and wow he is such an amazing teacher. We taught about keeping the sabbath day holy and he basically took over. Normally when members take over in lessons we get a little stressed because we can teach the points of doctrine and then the lessons get taken somewhere else, but it was NOT that way with him! He taught EVERY point of doctrine way better than we could have ever imagined! He is an AMAZING teacher! Wow. I learned so much from him, but i especially learned how important it is to teach with members.  So amazing. Melissa loved it!!  Thennnn yesterday night we had a Family Home Evening with Melissa, and her son, and Monchi's family at their house! Soooo cute! It was sooo good and they all just shared their cute little testimonies, even Melissa!  I loved every moment of that! David didn't come though :( but wow Melissa had a great week! This was also her fourth week in a row coming to church!  Her kids LOVE church and are sooo reverent during sacrament meeting! So amazing. they're amazing.

I wanted to write much more becuase I had a lot to talk about, buuuut I don't have time!  I sent a lot of pictures and that took a long time. But it was an amazing week and everyone is doing really well! We had 5 investigators at church and it was just amazing! I loveeeee being a missionary so much! And I LOVE MY COMPANION! Sister Davidson is sooo cute and she can already speak spanish and papiamentu better than i can. Also she can already teach way better than me. she has been out for 4 months. She is awesome and i love her.  Anywayyyy!!!!! Have a wonderful week!!! Share the gospel!

Hermana Woodbury