Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Temple time with the companions
 Here's another pictures from "Kite Flying" last week.
 We're not always like this...promise.
 Look how beautiful! Beautiful, beautiful day. Sad I didn't get to see
Grandpa. But being in the temple all morning takes away the
disapointment a little. I love the peace of the temple!
 We taught a fun lesson to the kids in the Corral family. We stressed
the importance of reading the scriptures and WHY it was important. We
used the pizza box as an object lesson and had them try and carve
their names in it. It was hard. It was also hard for the prophets to
carve THEIR words in the plates. So....what they wrote MUST have been
pretty important for us to read. We their posterity need to take
advantage of the blessings that we have through the scriptures.
 We taught a lesson at the temple with Ricardo this week. His little
girl Heidi came with us. We were able to teach the Plan of Salvation
there on the temple grounds. So blessed to have a temple in our area.
The Spirit was definitely felt in abundance during our lesson.
 My Jesus Cell phone that I let the little kids play with. (My neighbor
Misty Lynn made this for me...she's awesome!) The kids LOVE playing
with this. ...Especially Julianna :)
 We helped Sister Marble move out of her apartment this week. :'( Her
18 months are up! She has been working in the mission office
faithfully and works so hard for us all and for the Lord. Sad that I
just got here and she's leaving. She reminds me so much of my Grandma
Rose. :)
 We had exchanges with Sister McFarland this week. Such a sweetheart!
Sister Rivas and I loved having her with us. She's such a hard worker
and one of the happiest people I know
 My girls are graduating! I just had to have Alli post this for me
because I want you all to know how proud I am of them. Aren't they
gorgeous? Have fun at BYU-I girls! I'll see you there 2 fall semesters
from now. ;)
Peruvian treats from the Arrillo family. A new family we are teaching!
Yeah! We have been praying for a new family to teach. They are more
than awesome. We taught the first lesson last night and are so eager
to teach them the Plan of Salvation. Praying all goes well with this
family who are such kind and generous people. I already LOVE them so
Exchanges this week! All of us companionships at the church
afterwards. This is such a blessed area to have these Sisters here.
I'm privileged to be able to work with them.

 This week we contacted a
Peruvian family (we've been praying to teach a family) and we taught
them the first lesson last night. It was wonderful! We were able to
teach in unity and after doing the First Vision (gets me every time)
the Spirit was so strong, and I KNOW they felt it. They are so
wonderful. I can practically see how God has prepared them. Their
names are the Arillo family, a couple with two young girls. They are
now newly additions to my constant prayers. I love being a missionary with my whole heart. I would

never give up this experience for ANYTHING. Have a great week!
Hermana Silva

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Be Still, My Soul

Tonight we have dinner con la
familia Castillos, an appointment with Hermana Corral and then we are
taking our investigator Ricardo and his two sons to the temple grounds
tonight while we finish teaching them he Plan of Salvation. I am so
excited! Ricardo is doing awesome and is going to come to church with
us this week. He also said that he would like a priesthood blessing
sometime next week to help him with his decision to be baptized. He is
soooooo close. The only thing holding him back is his family. They are
all die-hard Catholic and it will be such a big change for him.
Watching this experiance up close is so different then from just
hearing about it during testimony meeting when a member gets up and
says how hard it was to join the church with their family against it
so much. I have a front row seat at watching this and Ricardo, very
understandably is scared. Please continue to keep him in your prayers.
Our other investigator Abel...oh my goodness where do I start?! He
never stops talking! He's awesome...but a chatterbox. He loves to tell
us every story in the book...and believe me he has many to choose
from. We decided to push his baptismal date back to May (hopefully I'm
still in the area with transfers coming up) since he is still not
ready. We really need to teach him the rest of the lessons...and the
law of chastity too...and well pretty much everything. We've gotten to
the point where we've had to ask him to stop talking enough for us to
teach. We constantly have to remind him of our purpose as
missionaries. Missionary work is just so entertaining right?? :)
Today we had missionary temple day where all of the missionaries in
the mission come at different times and go through a session with
President Miller and his wife. Since we are here in the area we had
the morning session and it was such a nice break. A time to just sit
and think. It was especially meaningful to be in the Celestial room
and think of Grandpa and my loved ones and dearest friends who have
passed on. We are all in this together as missionaries...all doing the
same work. There is so much peace at the temple. I didn't want to
leave. I'll be honest though...I'm super sad right now. This morning
was so wonderful and being in the temple brought so much comfort!
But...when I got out, there were a whole bunch of missionaries from El
Paso freaking out...can you guess why dad?? GRANDPA SILVA CAME. Haha,
he of course offered to drive a huge transfer van of missionaries up
to the temple here in Albuquerque from El Paso so he could see me. All
of the missionaries had been looking for me since apparently Grandpa
talked about me all the way up from El Paso. Everyone was
looking out for me...including Grandpa. Unfortunately I waited for 2 hours
outside waiting but I think he went in to find me in the session and
ended up staying because I never saw him. I admit...I teared up. I was
so hoping to see mi abuelo. Losing my sweet Grandpa Jones made me want
to see my Grandpa Silva that much more and just hug the only grandpa
I've got left here. It was hard but I left him a note and maybe I'll end up
serving in El Paso anyways...I've got over a year. Chances are good.
This week I have been playing piano like crazy. And remember people,
we are now on Latin Standard Time which means they call me last second
to do everything. Sometimes its tough, like this week when El
Presidente de la rama called us and asked us to do a fireside this
Sunday...the night before! We were able to pull it off but as a
missionary who is practically the only piano player in the branch I
came up with the musical numbers for Sacrament and church. So much
fun! Especially last second! I'm saying this with a sarcastic
little smile... ;) But I enjoy serving God's children with all my heart. 

We had district meeting this week and talked about attributes of
Christ (Ch. 6 PMG). My favorite chapter in Preach My Gospel! Afterwards, we were coming out of
the church and this guy stopped us asking if Mormons were the ones who
did that "Geneology thing." I got so excited because...well yah.
Family History is my middle name
Anyways, I gave the guy some
information and a card with directions to the Family History Center
and then...get this...he just wrapped me in a HUG!
Missionaries...especially SISTER MISSIONARIES...CANNOT HUG! All the
Elders who were all piled in the car just started hooting and laughing. Glad I
could make his day I guess haha, he had NO idea. I'm pretty sure I was super
duper red in the face walking back to the car. (Funny thing is the
AP's saw the whole thing too) They'll probably
send me home for that one. 

We've had several dog attacks this week...just my luck and one of our
members who came with us to a lesson got sick and poor thing threw up
everywhere but besides that this week has been great! We caught the
Elders flying kites in the park this week too which was kind of odd.
It turns out they were practicing for an "object lesson." Julianna
Orrozco (cutest little girl ever...I think I sent a picture of her
last week) played with my "Jesus cell-phone" during our entire lesson
the other night with her family. I'll have to send a picture of it. It
was SOOO adorable. She kept asking in the cutest little Spanish
voice..."Cristo...donde esta?? Quiero verle, porque ...Soy Julianna!" It melted my heart.

We had a tough experience in Walmart the other day. Some guy came out
of nowhere while we were shopping and started yelling at us and
telling us we were all going to hell. I felt so bad for him. It's
people like that that I want to sit them down, tape them to a chair
and change their minds so they can remember who they really are
He seemed so confused and I wanted him to feel of the Savior's love so badly.
Something was so obviously missing in his life. We told him to have a
good day and left him shouting behind us. The great thing is, is that
as we were leaving, some lady stopped us and paid for our groceries,
thanking us for all our service to the Lord right afterwards. Funny how we saw two
different sides of people like that and all in the span of just a few
minutes. There really are good people everywhere. I love God's children.

So I had a deep conversation with my soul this week...I decided to remind
myself of a few things:
"Be still my soul. The Lord is on thy side. With patience bear, thy
cross of grief and pain. Leave to thy God, to order and provide, in
every change, he faithful will remain."
These words brought me so much comfort. Perfect missionary advice.
Elder Ballard also reminded me this week in my studies that "On your
mission, weaknesses become skilled strengths, challenges become
opportunities, trials become triumphs and adversity becomes AN
ADVENTURE...all in the service of the Lord."

Have a wonderful week all!
 This missionary sure loves you. Thank you for your
letters. They give me that much needed boost every week. This area is
truly where I am supposed to be. What a privilege it is to be a
missionary at this time. I love you ALL mucho. Cuidense and remember
we are one big spiritual family with the most loving Father
Love always,
-Hermana Silva
Sister Neibaur's grandson! Elder Espinoza 

 Caught the Elders flying kites in the park for an "object lesson" :)
 The beautiful (dry and brown/sometimes pink) Sandia mountains!
 These sister missionaries drove up with my Grandpa Silva to the temple

today and are currently serving in my grandparent's ward! Can you
believe it!!? 

Our brief Trio at the Albuquerque, New Mexico temple this morning :) Loving it. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Tacos and Sunsets: Loving Life in Albuquerque

WHAT A WEEK!! I'm a little tired and I think after grocery shopping I'm going to take a two hour nap...my body is so tired. 3 weeks of missionary work and I'm still going...barely. Haha no. I love this stinkin hard work. I watched all of conference in Spanish...when one of the members of the 70 said he was from Burley, Idaho area my arm shot up in a fist...I got so excited! A few people laughed...I shouldn't have done it though. I was in the chapel. :) No matter where you go someone has connections to Burley. I've had 3 people in our Spanish branch who lived there and a street contact who did too. Plus 2 missionaries here have family from Burley. Burley is just great. Paul is even better.
My new companion and I unintentionally dressed the same last Wednesday. What can I say about my new companion? I don't know how about hilarious! She say's the funniest things. Yesterday for example..."What's the difference between Texas and Wyoming?" or "You know you're a missionary when you start comparing Harry Potter to Joseph Smith and the Restoration." This girl kills me. So glad to have her in our companionship. Amazing example of faith and endurance. Love you Sister Rivas!
Albuquerque sunsets! As promised, Al. 
 Lunch time! Tex Mex tacos...seriously we eat so many carne asada con limon tacos and horchata. It's the best.
 Ok, so my new companion who just left the MTC had this picture on her camera. There are so many Sisters there now that they are having to convert Men's restrooms into Women's. Sorry, her camera has a huge scratch on it. YAY for all these SISTER MISSIONARIES!
 Victor y Julianna :)
 Family dinner with the Orozco family. :)
 This is a picture that Elder Newman drew me before I left the MTC. Is it not awesome!?? The shield is CTR...HLJ in Spanish. Haz lo justo. This kid can draw. 
 District Meeting! (trying to decide where to go for lunch afterwards)

 My companion eats Broccoli for breakfast...Broccoli. ????

 My new love seat...can you say Cactus!?
 Hard to tell what this is...but this is our 3rd cockroach this week!
 Sister Rivas, our new companion! We are now a trio...probably not for too long though...
My lunch today...thought you might be interested in it. Amazing fresh carne asada tacos with Agua de Melon to drink it down. So good. (#Mesquite)

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Tender Mercies of a Missionary in Albuquerque

  • Our appointments were all in the same area, so we saved on miles (which we are almost out of)
  • I grabbed a few extra random direction cards to the church this morning and we ended up using all of them while tracting
  • I wore my boots even though it was kinda warm outside and later was attacked by a 'vicious' chihuahua haha (I now have two prompt little puncture marks in my right boot)
  • Ran out of water while proselyting, someone that we met gave me a cold water bottle for free
  • Talked to this little boy named Santo and referred his address to the English Elders...they texted us today saying they found him crying from being bullied and were able to comfort him and teach the entire family...I have a testimony of referrals. 
  • We contacted ALL THREE of our referrals in one day and they were all positive experiences...miracle!
  • Scripture I looked up this morning was used to comfort someone today!
  • I got a letter from my daddy.
  • The cookies we made didn't burn...completely.
Aren't tender mercies awesome!!!?????

From the past several weeks I have learned that trials are in reality, seeds of strength. And especially at this Easter time, we have cause to remember the Savior who always remembers us. President Uchtdorf said, "No matter our circumstances, no matter our challenges or trials, there is something in each day to embrace and cherish. There is something in each day that can bring gratitude and joy if only we will see and appreciate it." President surprised us last night and we got another companion today. Back to a trio...my wonderful trainer and I don't exactly know how we feel about that but we are working through it alright. We both had a blessing last night from our Zone leaders and the Elders next door. I feel like I can do this. With the Lord's help and the ministering angels He promised to send me...all is well. We are determined to make this transfer a great one.
Hope everyone had a wonderful Easter! Ojala que tengan una buena semana!
-Hermana Silva

 Our Zone Leaders "tried" to fix one of the English sister's bikes...ended up having to take it apart instead. haha
First sight of hot air balloon here in Albuquerque! 
 We did exchanges this last Monday and Sister Purcell who is from Oahu is wonderful! We had such a wonderful time together and saw a few miracles. I seriously just love this Sister. One of the sweetest, warm hearted people I have the privilege of knowing and working with. She helped me so much this week, she doesn't even know.
My study area and picture wall!
Look at those blue Albuquerque skies! You should see the sunsets! Hopefully I'll send a picture of that soon too.
 We made a homemade Easter card for a formal investigator who's having a tough time. So fun to get crafty. We seriously had glue and scissors and paper everywhere.
 And this is the extent of my Easter feasting. Besides tacos and Spanish rice. But the English speaking Elders had so many treats they shared some with us. Pretty fancy, no? 

 Silly Hermana Silva and Hermana Allen
I'm in a spunky mood today! Probably because I just had chick filet. 

Silly Hermanas :)

"Dear Hermana Silva, 
Here is a photo of you with Pres. & Sis. Nally! They were SO impressed with you, as we are! Thank you for your beautiful heart and wonderful attitude. You add so much to the New Mexico Albuquerque Mission."
-Sister Miller
At the MTC with President and Sister Nally