First off we officially are the West Mission! We have a new president who is AMAZING. He and his wife have so much love for us its seriously exactly what I needed. Neither of them have served a mission before so we are all figuring this out together. We had interviews with the president the day we met them and I cried, he cried as we expressed the difficulties we were having being away from home and our families. And how tough this whole mission thing is. But we also discussed how beneficial and how much better it gets. He told me how great of a missionary I am and how I am going to bless the lives of many. And we ended with a prayer together. And the best part was this whole thing was in English! I seriously can't express how grateful I am for not only the president but for his wife and their daughter! His wife is so understanding, so loving and nurturing, they both cherish their calling so much! And treat us all like their own children. It is so comforting. Their daughter S-t- is 14 but looks 18. but she is so sweet and so funny! I love her! We instantly bonded over our love for coke and our hate for fish! haha but seriously, strongest girl I know. Her parents have been called to serve for three years. so this brave young woman packed her bags and will spend 3 of the most vital years in a teenager's life living in Ecuador. Then when she returns she has a year of down time then she serves her own mission! Wow.. she is my hero, Seriously, how brave! Over all their family is amazing and are really here to love us and take care of us. Oh and just an added bonus, we don't have to wear nylons and we can drink coke! And at the beginning of next month when the first batch of missionaries arrive the president will make a mission wide announcement on his decision about writing people other than family. pray pray pray!Some more news, our ward is having a temple day on the 27th and I asked my companion if we could go. And she was very stern about the fact that we couldn't attend. I told her I wanted to ask the president she just kind of blew me off.... well we are going! I am beyond excited!Okay here come some more emotions! My companion....... I'm losing it. We are opposites. I am very connected to the people, I love to love and want to build relationships and trust with not only the members but with the investigators and she the opposite. I think she cares about the people in the sense that she knows she's right everyone does! but sometimes i feel like that results in rushing and not teaching by the spirit. And I like to take my time and really get to know the people. And if I feel like they aren't ready for something I don't push it. That's something we often don't agree on. But not only am I here to teach I am here to learn... and boy am I learning. It's been really hard for me because I genuinely feel like she does not care about me. And she never informs me of things, she doesn't wanna work as a companionship and when she does "train" me (because I have 12 weeks of training) I feel like its only because she wants credit for the outcome. Like she asked me if I had spoken in Spanish during my interview with the president and when I told her no she was literally annoyed. And I think its because with our last president when he heard how well I was speaking Spanish after a week he complimented her on her training skills. Another struggle we have is she like to say little "jokes" you know those personal digs that no ones else thinks is funny.. yeah I hate them. I don't know how to handle the situation when we are in front of other people so I just tell her she's not funny. All those things I've been very good about just sucking up and forgetting about so we can have the spirit with us. But last night during our lesson I was really struggling and trying really hard to explain something in Spanish and because I was struggling so much I guess she thought it was funny? and looked to the investigator and snickered. As my eyes filled with tears I finished my sentence in my broken Spanish and tried to take deep breaths so that I didn't freak out right then and there. I shortly got over it and the mom of the household picked up on what had happened and complimented me like 6 times on my Spanish that night haha. Although its extremely hard to live with someone and be with them 24-7 when you feel as if they don't like you at all, when I am angry or offended the words of the hymn "I'm trying to be like Jesus" come to my mind, "at times I am tempted to make a wrong choice, but I try and listen as the still small voice whispers, love one another as Jesus loves you. try to show kindness in all that you do. Be gentle and loving in deed and in thought, for these are the things Jesus taught." I am here to be a representative of Jesus Christ. My companion has something that God loves her for and I have been praying that I can find that something and love her for it too. At the end of the day she is my companion, it is my duty to love her, protect her, and carry her when she can no longer carry herself. And I will do these things with a smile on my face.Some more emotions in results of feeling like the one person you're with all the time doesn't like you... I have been homesick. This week was the first time i cried myself to sleep. My pillow with mascara all over it can testify for me haha. But honestly, I am so grateful for times like this. First off because it really makes me appreciate my family and friends and seriously how blessed I am to have such amazing loving people in my life. And secondly, the only person I have to turn to here is the Lord. And my oh my how blessed am I to have 18 months to spend just me and God. like what? The growth and strength my relationship with the Lord has gained is indescribable. And I am forever grateful for that. The Atonement of Jesus Christ is not only for our sins. It is for times of trial when we feel alone or that we cant go on. Jesus Christ has felt everything we feel in this life and He will lift us when we need it. Another song that has helped me is "He´ll Carry You" by Hillary Weeks, in the chorus it says "and in the moment when no earthly words can take away your sorrow and no human eyes can see what you re going through, when you've taken your last step and done all that you can do, He will lift your heavy load and carry you." I have felt the Savior carry me multiple times on my mission and I know that He will continue to do so. I am so grateful for my family and friends... thank you all for being so kind and loving me! I am so sorry if i ever acted unappreciative of your love or friendship. There are so many things I wish I could take back... To all those who I have hurt or offended or simply not treated as Jesus Christ would, I am sincerely sorry. I wish there was a way I could take it all back. But I hope you all know how truly sorry I am.We had a baptism this week! A----y! her whole family is inactive but we are trying to get them all back to church. Her and her sister L---y are now the only two active in their family. A----y was baptized at the beach!!! Because the whole city didn't have any running water! haha I loved it. Their whole family is amazing and so sweet! I really have fallen in love with the people here!
To end I would like to thank every single person for your encouraging emails. I print them every week and read them over and over. They keep me going. Special shout out to Bishop Bramwell, thank you.. I read your email at least 2 times a day! And same for my parents and my siblings, I read them all over and over. Thank you all. I love you!!
PS: Just so everyone knows, I can't receive packages over 4.5 lbs. So if you would like to send me something and its over 4.5 lbs you have to send it in more than one box! thanks for all the love!over and out!xoxoHermana YounceHere is my new address:
Mission Ecuador Guayaquil WestCasilla 09-04-206
EcuadorWe played jenga on Sunday before lunch
My favorite little boys! C----s who was just baptized last weekend and A----l, he's 5 we are teaching his dad right now they live with C----s and his family who I am so in love with they take such good care of me! his dad is being baptized this weekend!
I waited 3 days after I found out I could drink coke to have my first one on the fourth of July! I also wore my red white and blue!
omg! today is my 2 month mark!!!!! YAYAYAYY!! 2 down 16 to go! everyone celebrate tonight for me!!!