Saturday, May 30, 2015

Week #39 in Panama!

Hi all! So we had a really interesting week this past week because we
spent the entire week outside of our island. First, on Tuesday and
Wednesday we were in the island of Nargana for Zone Conference.
President Carmack came and we watched Meet the Mormons as a Zone. It
was so fun and I LOVED the movie. I really want to own it when I get
home. It was great. I cried when they were taking the son to the
airport to leave on his mission haha. Brought back a lot of memories!!
Not something you could pay me to ever do again haha. After Zone
Conference, we went to Carti Tupile, which is the only other island
out here with hermanas on it. Hna P. and Hna C. are the
missionaries on that island, which was fun because now all of the hnas
on Blas have been my comp at one point during the mission haha. Being
on Carti was really fun, mostly because Hna. P. and I always have a
good time together. Shes the best. Her and Hna H. and I have become
SO close since the MTC. They are such a wonderful blessing to me! We
also really started to appreciate our island more after being on
Carti. They rarely have water. Like any water at all. We showered the
first day we were there, on Thursday, but then the water ran out and
never came back so we didnt shower again until we got home on
Saturday. I was losing my mind. I like to be clean, I dont know if you
guys knew that about me. So on Friday it started to rain really hard
and Im like guys get me some shampoo quick Im going to wash my hair.
Then I actually found a rain gutter coming off the church building
that was putting out a ton of water so I washed my hair in that. It
was great. The rain only lasted long enough for me to get done washing
it, so I know the Lord was helping me out a bit there! =) Ill send you
guys pics when we get back in the city. We also ran into 3 gringos
there, two women and a man. One of the women came right up to us and
was like Hi! I served my mission on this island 10 years ago. So that
was really cool. She shared a lot of her mission stories with us. It
was really fun to hear about what it was like on the island 10 years
ago. She was really cool. We gave her our parents numbers to text you
guys a picture of us, but she wasnt getting signal on the island so
she said shed try when she gets back to panama. Hopefully you guys get
it. Thats about it for this past week. I now love my island more than
ever, we live REALLY well here, especially compared to other
missionaries. So blessed to be on Ustupu! I love you all so much and I
hope you have a fantastic week!!

Hna Anderson

Week #38 in Panama!

Hi all!

This week was a really good one for us, mostly because President
Carmack had a really successful visit to the island. He came in on
Friday just for that day and was able to interview a lot of people in
the branch. Those interviews were much needed and we already are
seeing lots of positive results. He also went on a visit with us. We
took him to a cita with D. and the girls. We taught them about
the Family Proclamation and had a really awesome lesson. D. also
asked if President could baptize her and her daughters and he said he
would love to! So he will be baptizing them in Panama on June 6th. Its
going to be awesome. President said hes only ever baptized one other
person the entire 2 yrs that hes been mission president. Its going to
be amazing.

Thats about it for this past week. Plus this computer is super slow so
its a short email  this week. I hope you all have a great week! Miss
and love you all!

Herm. Anderson

Week #37 in Panama!


I absolutely loved being able to see and talk to everyone yesterday.
Click HERE for Skype video!  It was wonderful, and like Corson, it gave me a boost of energy to
work harder than ever this next part of my mission!! You all seem to
be doing so well, and Im so glad to see that. I loved hearing from the
family in IL as well! Such a special surprise!

This past week was a really good one for us. Our golden family, the
familia M. (D. and her daughters) continue to progress!!
This past week we placed a baptisimal fecha with them for June 6th. It
worked out perfectly because when we invited them to be baptized we
actually asked them for May 23rd since they have received all of the
lessons and havent missed a sunday going to church in over a month.
But D. told us that she still wants to be baptized in Panama
because her daughter who is a member lives in Panama and she wants her
to be there. She has told us this before and the last time she told us
that she said  she wouldnt have vacations from work to be able to go
again until January. But then this time she told us that she actually
has vacation along with her daughters, the first week in June. Its
perfect because since my comp is going home on June 11th, we had
already planned on going into the city on the 6th so she could go say
bye to all of her areas. So we got really excited when we realized how
perfect it was and told her and she got really excited, too, so they
all accepted the fecha for June 6th to be baptized in Panama. So we
are visiting them 2-3 times a week from now until then to make sure
they continue to progress towards that day. Its sooo great. They have
been so prepared. I cant wait to read you guys my journal entries from
after our lessons with her. Every lesson is so powerful and the spirit
is always so strong.

Thats the news I had to share with you guys from this past week! I
hope you all have a fantastic week!! I love and miss you all tons!!

Herm. Anderson

Week #36 in Panama!


Im soo excited for Sunday to get here! I cant believe its already time
for our second skype call. So exciting!

I dont have any stories as cool as eating puma meat for this past week
haha. However, yesterday my comp threw up haha. gross, right? I lead
the music for sacrament meeting (Ive actually done that a lot over the
course of my mission but still have never learned how to actually do
it so I just wave my hand around) and when I sat down after the
sacrament hymn she told me she was going to puke and that we needed to
go. So after they got done passing the sacrament we bailed and she
puked at the house. But now shes all better haha so now worries. It
was because she took a pain pill on an empty stomach. But thats about
as exciting as this week got for us.

However our investigator D. is continuing to progress, slowly but
surely. We taught her the word of wisdom this week and also the law of
chastity. She understood both very well and accepted them without
problem. The only problem with the word of wisdom is that the kunas
have a tradition of drinking chicha fuerte. I cant remember if Ive
already told you guys about this or not. But chicha fuerte means
strong juice and its juice that they put underground until it ferments
and then they drink it on special occasions, like when a girl gets her
period for the first time. Its a real problem for investigators and
even members here because its a tradition that theyve known all their
lives. So thats a challenge with D., but we are praying that she
will be able to understand it. But the cool thing was that after we
went back for our second lesson with her this week after we taught her
the first one which was the Word of wisdom, she told us that she told
her husband that she wouldnt be making him coffee anymore because it
was bad for him and also because she has to try it to know how much
sugar to add to it and she doesnt want to do that anymore. So thats
awesome. And then she said she made this crema, which is like a thick
cream drink, and her husband loved it so much that he told her if she
keeps making that he wont want to drink coffee either. Its awesome.
For our lesson with them this tuesday her husband finally said he
would join us too so we are so excited about that! They are the best.

Thats about it for this past week. Cant wait to skype on Sunday!! I
love and miss you all lots!!

Also one more thing. Has anyone sent any letters to me within the last
3 or 4 months? Because the mail changes hands a lot coming out to the
island and we got our mail last week and I got corsons package that he
sent, but no other mail so I wanted to make sure I wasnt missing

I hope you all have a great week!

Herm. Anderson

Week #35 in Panama!

I hope everyone had a great week last week! Ours was a Little tough as far as the work is concerned. A ton of our citas fell pretty much every day this week which is always a bit of a downer. But on the brightside it allowed us the opportunity to do a lot of contacting and find a lot of new people to teach!

Okay now ill get to story time. So on Saturday night we were feeling kinda down because a lot of our citas were falling that day, so we stopped at a Little tienda to buy some bread. we ended up sitting down on the curb outside of the tienda window and the Little kuna ladies came and talked to us. they were so funny. kunas are seriously the best. i love them. so after a while they felt bad for us and also gave us mango haha so we were enjoying a Little bread and mango. then a guy from the family who we had our next cita with passed by and told as that the whole family was home for us to teach. then he said something in kuna to the ladies and desio, a member from our branch was passing by too and told us that that guy just told the ladies that someone in his family killed a tigre in the monte! tigre not really meaning tiger, but just some kind of big cat, and monte is the mountain where they all go to hunt their food. they have to ride in kayaks to get over there. so we got really excited and basically ran to their house to see. So we get there and the first thing we see are big cat paws and legs. then they showed us the face and tail. apparently the 21 year old kid who shot it was out their by himself and since it was so heavy he could only bring back the legs, head and tail and had to go back the next day for the body. they were all so excited, corson you wouldve loved it. they were all skinning it and cleaning it and the dad was sooo proud. i took a video of the kid telling the story of how he killed it corson so you can see it when you get home. it ended up being a puma. so they told us that they were using the bones and skin to sell for kuna medicine and throwing the meat out. so ive got to tell you that my comp has wanted to eat tigre meat the whole time shes been out here but hadnt yet so when she Heard they were just going to throw the meat out she asked if we could have it. they happily gave it to us. so we went to the tienda to get seasonings and then went home and cooked it up. then we ate it. hahaa we are true mountain women now. it was very tough meat haha which we expected and it made us gag a Little the first bite because we remembered that we were eating puma haha but it was lots of fun. then the next day after church our neighbors brought us shark. i really liked the shark. it tasted like chicken. the puma didnt really have a lot of flavor, but it smelled exactly like hamburger when it was cooking. so thats what we ate this weekend. Insane right? definitely something ill never forget haha. Im trying to send pics now! hopefully they load! I hope you all have a great week. I love and miss you all!

hna anderson

Week #34 in Panama!


So we had an AWESOME week last week. It was exhausting, but in the
most wonderful way. So It was our first full week in our área of the
entire change, and we took advantage of that. We worked hard all day
every day and found 12 new investigators and a ton of menos activos!
We also saw four baptisms on Saturday, one who was a Little girl whos
grown up in the church and just turned 8 and the other three were
convert baptisms. The baptisms were absolutley beautiful on the beach.
I hope I can send pictures so you guys can see! It was amazing. The
three convert baptisms were a child and two cousins of a menos activo
couple. They had just began teaching them right before I got here.
They are soo cute and so excited about the góspel! We are also working
on reactivating the entire family, which is great. So we were
preparing for the baptisms all week because the baptismal clothes we
had all had rust stains on them so after scrubbing and bleaching them
for two hours we realized we wouldnt be able to get them out. So we
asked our ZLs if we could cut the stains out and patch the holes with
White material. They said that would be fine so we spent a lot of time
sewing on patches at night after we got home from working. It was
pretty fun actually, I enjoy sewing. Then right after the baptisms we
had to immediately come home and wash all of the clothes again so they
wouldnt get ruined from the ocean wáter. We have to take care of a lot
more of the minor details out here haha. So that was all really cool.

Our other family of four who are Golden investigators continue to
progress. We taught them the plan of salvation on Friday night and had
a really awesome lesson with them. The mom had sooo many questions and
they were really good questions. There were a few that my comp and I
had to look up after the lesson because we didnt even know! Shes great
though and right now the only thing holding her back, she says, is
that she wants her daughter who lives in Panama to be here for their
baptisms. The last time she told us that, though, was a couple of
weeks ago so when we teach her again on Thursday we are going to ask
about that again. We are thinking that once her understanding of the
real purpose and importance of baptism grows, she wont want to put it
off, because the next time her daughter would be able to come out
would be in January and thats a really long time to wait. Prayers
would be appreciated for her and her family!

Those are the big points that I wanted to share with you guys from
this week. OH also, we had 68 people at church yesterday! Thats like
unheard of on Blas. It was great!!

I hope you all have a great week!! I love and miss you all lots!

Hna Anderson

Week #33 in Panama!

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a great week.

So Ill give you an overview of what I can remember of this last week.
Its seriously soo good that I keep a journal because I forget what
happened so quickly!

We started out with a pretty normal week. Well for Tuesday haha. We
had a normal work day that day and then on Wednesday we left at 5 in
the morning to go to another island for zone meeting. I swear Ive
spent half this change on a boat. But we arent planning on doing any
more traveling until may so thatll be great! So since we are the
farthest island we got on first and then stopped at all of the islands
along the way picking up missionaries. it was pretty fun haha. So we
had zone meeting and then werent able to travel the next day like we
had planned, (if you wanna know why ask whit haha), so we didnt get
back to our island until Friday. We were glad to get back though.

So on Saturday we had a very busy and very full work day.We had citas
with new investigators, menos activos, and investigators that we have
been working with so we were really busy. It was great! We worked like
that every day in the city, so with all of the traveling since ive
been out here ive really missed working like that!

Yesterday was a full and busy day too. Church went REALLY well. We had
fast and testimony meeting and I wasnt sure what to expect but it was
great. SO many people got up and shared their testimonies, it was
awesome. Then afterwards we were able to have ALL of the classes.
Sunday school, RS, primary, priesthood, YW. The only one we had to
teach was RS but we were happy to do it because its been so long since
theyve had it since the president has been in the city. This branch is
incredible to be doing what they are doing. Im so blessed to be
serving here. Then after church and lunch, we went out to work and
were able to have some really good lessons. At one point, towards the
end of the day, we were walking by this really nice house, it had
windows and everything, and I commented on how nice it was and then my
comp asked if we should contact it. So we did and we found R. R. is
75 year old man who is actually a member of the church. He was
baptized in the city in the early 90s but because of health reasons
and other things, hes never attended church here on the island or even
talked to missionaries. He kept asking how we knew to come to his
house because hes been praying for a way to get back into the church.
It was an amazing miracle and we are really excited to help him find
his way back.

Well that was about it this week. Im looking forward to this coming
week because we will have our first full week on our island! We are
also expecting to have 2 to 4 baptisms this Saturday, which will be
great! It should be a really good week for us. I hope you all have a
great week this week too! I love and miss you all tons!! Ill try to
send some pics, but if I cant Im sorry!

Hna Anderson

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Thursday, May 7, 2015

Week #32 in Panama!


I hope you all had a great week, Easter, and conference weekend! I sure did! 

So we got back from all of our traveling on Thursday. We were SOO happy to be back on our own island. We have to travel again on Wednesday for Zone Conference, but its only about a 2 hour boat ride, so not too terrible. We decided that our island is hands down the best haha. We definitely have the best living standards! Traveling definitely made us super grateful for Ustupu.

My birthday was a good day. I woke up to little children bringing balloons into the house that my comp was outside blowing up for them to take in. It was super cute and really sweet. She also wrote me a cute birthday card and gave me a super pretty mola, like the one I sent home to you guys, but a lot more detailed since she bought it here on the island. Then that night after we got home, she walked over to the neighbors house next door and sent the kids to me to call me over and when I got there they had surprised me with brownies and sang happy birthday. It was really great and a perfect mission birthday. Mom told me that Taesons birthday was great too! I love sharing a birthday with him!

Saturday was an interesting day. The internet company was supposed to speed up the internet for all of the islands this weekend so that everyone could watch it, but they forgot, so we werent able to show conference on Saturday or see it, which was a bummer and a bit frustrating for me. My comp was a lot more patient with it haha. But then yesterday, we got to the chapel two hours early to make sure everything was good to go and it was. The internet had been sped up and everything was good to go. So we were able to watch both sessions. We did watch them in Spanish, which was fine, but we downloaded the Saturday sessions in english yesterday in between the two sessions so we could hear them in English. Even though we understand it in Spanish, its a lot more powerful for us in our own language. Today we are downloading the sunday sessions in english to hear them again. We were also able to download saturdays sessions in Spanish and KUNA for the members here to watch this week, so they dont have to miss those messages. This is the first year that they are available in Dule Gaya (Kuna) and the people who recorded it our from our islands out here. It was super cool to play them back and hear their voices. 

Conference was amazing this year, as always. Did you all notice how much they talked about Adam and Eve and the creation? Super cool. Also, did you hear that Kim B. Clark, BYUI president got called to the 70? Will that mean the school will be getting a new president? Also, does anyone know why President Monson only spoke once? We are assuming its for his health, but werent sure. I loved the Saturday afternoon session, the only one Ive seen so far in English. The sunday sessions were amazing, too, and Im really excited to hear them in English. I loved David A Bednars talk on Fear and how Godly fear dispells all other fear. I learned SOO much about doctrine and the importance of only seeking Gods approval from Elder Christoffersons talk. Elder Wilford W Andersens talk was amazing. I loved the music analogies. It was so perfect and made a lot of sense to me. I also really really loved Elder Hollands talk. They were all soo amazing and I hope you all will have the opportunity to listen to them all again and again because theres so much to be learned from Conference. Its an incredible opportunity we have to hear directly from the Lord through His prophet and apostles. Conference is really something Ive come to cherish.

I love and miss you all so much and hope you have a fantastic week!

Hna Anderson