Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Busy, Busy, Busy

Dear Family,
Well, first things first: Jerson and José weren't baptized.  They looked so promising but afterwards we could never get a hold of them.  It was a bit sad :(  I think Jerson started feeling a little bit pressured, and so we've decided to wait for a week or two and then start again.  Hopefully he can be baptized some day soon!
Other things to say, hmm.  Well my new companion is super sweet and I've very greatful to have the opportunity to train her.  It's kind of funny, because she copies EVERYTHING I do.  I have to be super careful that I don't do anything wrong, because she copies it all.  I think it's just because she's new and doesn't know what to do yet.
Tomorrow we are going to San Jose at 3 am so that I can be in a leadership meeting with the other STL (sister training leaders) and zone leaders and President Wilkinson.
These last two transfers it has been super dificult to get people to attend church, but we've talked to our zone leaders and have a few ideas of what we can do better.  Pray that we can have a lot of investigators attend conference!
This week I "hosted" (I don't know what other word to use) my first divisions/splits.  It was with Hna Guit from Guatemala.  I'm not sure yet exactly what i am supposed to do as STL, but one thing is that I have to go on splits with a different hermana every week. It will be nice to learn from all of them! 
As a STL I have to call the hermanas in my zone each night for their daily numbers, and Sundays for weekly numbers.  I'm basically responsable for them and if they are disobedient or not having success I'm here to help them.  It's been hard finding time to do things.  Every second I'm on the phone, trying to explain something to my companion that she doesn't understand, in a lesson, etc.  The Lord's work is a busy work!

Yesterday we and a great lesson with an investigator, Paola.  She is a single mother with 3 children under the age of 4.  She is really special, but hasn't wanted to come to church because her children are really noisy.  But our goal is that she can be baptized the 25 of April. 
We also are teaching a YM, Justin.  He is 19 and we've only taught about the restauration but he seems really intersted.  We have a goal of 4 baptisms for the month of April.
That's about all I can think of, thank you grandma for the monthly packages!  Happy late birthday Dad and happy birthday Grandma Bratt!  Love you all!  And tell everyone hi from me when you go to Mexico.
Les Quiero!
Hermana Bratt

They split our zone, we are now Zona San Roque!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A Week of Changes!

Dear Family,
So much has happened this week!  Wednesday I was saying my nightly prayers (it was 10:30) when the Asistants called me to tell me that my companion had transfers Friday but that I was going to train again and so we needed to be in San Jose at 12 pm the next day.  What followed was a quick clean up of the house as my companion packed.
We left early in the morning the next day and when we arrived at the mission office my companion went out on divisions as I sat in a meeting about training.  Afterwards The two other sisters that were going to train and I went out on divisions until seven pm.  I was with my trainer/first companion Hna Muñoz!  At 8:00 pm I lead all the new missionaries to the presidents house (a 20 min walk)  and might have gotten us all lost.  (What can I say, I've traveled to the president's house a lot, but it was dark!  Don't worry mom, I was only about three blocks south of where we needed to be.)
At 8:30 we arrived at the Presidents house, at a quick dinner and received our companions at 9 pm.  My new companion is Hermana Miriel.  She is from Mexico.  She's 19.  Her best friend is serving in Costa Rica as well.  Hna Miriel is really awesome.  I've already learned a bunch from her.
At 4:15 the next morning we woke up and got ready to go to a mission conference presided by Elder Maine. Afterwards we took the bus back to Nicoya.  We didn't get home until 10:30 Friday night. During the bus ride I started thinking of what we wcould do more in order to achieve our goal of 2 baptisms for this month.  We haven't had any inviestigators attend church lately and so none of our investigators can be baptized.  However, I ended up calling about half the members in our branch asking them to pray for us so that we can complete our goal.  One member even offered to fast for us!
Saturday we decided to contact an ex-investigator, a 20 year old named Jerson.  We started talking to him and he ended up telling us his story, that in Novemeber almost got baptized but then decided that he wasn't prepared.  My companion started talking about how we can feel prepared, how we can recognize answers, etc.  She was awesome.  We felt the Spirit so strongly and as we ended the lessons committed him to be baptized this Saturday!
Now....The sad thing is that we didn't come to church yesterday when he said he would, but he still had attened chruch more than 3 times so he can be baptized.  The happy thing is yesterday after church we went to find him and ended up talking to his dad, Jose.  Josè had has all of the missionary lessons and read  almost all of the book of Mormon.  He told us that he hasn't been baptized because he hasn't recieved an answer that he should yet.  I committed to prayer yesterday with the question "Heavenly Father, should I be baptized the 28th of March?" and then read a chapter from the Book of Mormon.  He said if he recieved an answer he could come home early from work Saturday to be baptized!!!!!!!  We have an appointment at 4 today to see what's happened.
Please please please please please please pray from Jose and Jerson!  I know that they can be baptized this Saturday!
Okay, last thing: They have split our zone into two zone and Sunday right before church our new zone leader called me it tell me that I'm the new sister training leader for the zone.  WHAT.   I was so surprised and didn't beleive him.  I had the sister training leaders of my old zone call him to make sure.  They called me back congratulating me.  AHHH!  I was hoping they would tell me it was a mistake.  I still really didn't beleive it, but the Asistants called me today in the morning to ask if I had any questions about my new assingment.  I can't beleive it!  When someones a new sister training leader she's usually with an old leader so that she can learn and they both or sister traingin leaders. I was just called out of the blue, and I've never been trained or anything.  Plus, I'm all alone and training a newbie.  AHHHHHH
Anyways, A lot of things have happened.  I need all the prayers possible!  And all the advice you have.
Well, this is my rant for this week.  Sorry the email is so long and wordy!  I'm kind of freaking out, but happy!
Love you all!
Hermana Bratt

Me and My Trainer!

Me With My Hija - and Elder Lopez, one of the Assistants, photo bombing

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Pura Vida

Dear Family, 

Well...this week passed, and right now I can't remember anything that happened.  Hmmm let's think.

Sunday an American couple that lives in our ward, the Maxwells, invited us to eat lunch after church.  Well we all piled in there car and started what ended up being an hour and a half car ride. When we finally arrived at their house they did have any food ready and so we had to wait about another 1 and a half for it to cook.  When we finally got home it was about 6 pm.  Another bad thing is we went with couple missionary as well that are serving in Liberia, an area about 2 hours away from Nicoya.  They probably didn't get home until 8 or 9.

Being as we lost a lot of time Sunday we decided to end our p-day early yesterday so we could work a little longer.  If the Maxwells invite us to their house again it will have to be on a p-day, because we wasted way too much time! (We didn't know they lived so far away!).  However, I was able to give a Book of Mormon away to one of the Maxwell's neighbors.  He's a young man named Jonatan, or something like that, and he seemed super special and interested in reading it.

It sounds like you all had a blast in DC without me.  Mom sent me a couple pictures, but send me more!!!!!!!!!!!!  PLEASE.  

One of the miracles we had was that on Saturday we went to visit a fairly new family of investigators, Luis and Roci. When we arrived Roci's mom was there too.  We started talking and it turns out that Roci's mom, Ritsy is a member.  She was baptized about 30 years ago and has been inactive for about that long as well.  However she has a lot of good memories from attending church.  She told us before she moved away and left the church she was preparing to serve a mission.  We told her she could still serve one, as all of her children are grown up, and she was really excited.  She then told us that she was going to come to church Sunday and bring Roci and Luis.  It was an awesome experience.  Although they didn't end up coming to church yesterday, they all slept in, I have a lot of hope for this family!

Our cook, Marisol,  isn't a member, her whole family are catholic. However, they are really great people and I know that Lord wants them to eaccept the restored gospel.  We've started teaching Marisol the missionary lessons everyday at lunch (unbeknownst to her).  She doesn't like to be preached to if it's not in the Bible, but we've been using a lot of strategy.  Mwahaha.

Transfers have been moved to Friday, as two area seventy are coming to speak to us.  All of the missionaries have to be in San Jose in a stake center at 8:30 am Friday morning, (Many with suitcases).  We don't know if either of us have transfers, but for sure we are going to have to take a bus at 3 am.  Woot. 

Love you all!

¡Pura Vida!

Hermana Bratt

The soup here has lots of BIG veggies

I opened up a balm for muscles and found a nice message from dad,
one he wrote 10 months ago.  Thanks dad!  Love you too.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

A Week of Travels

Dear Family,

Well we didn't have much success in our area as we were gone from it a lot last week.  Wednesday we heard a general authority, Elder Alonso, speak.  I learned a lot of great things from him.  He also kind of hinted that he can see President Wilkinson as a general authority soon.  And it's true, President Wilkinson is so strong and firm in the gospel and a great leader.

Luckily when we returned to Nicoya we had seats this time.  I never again want to ride in a bus for 5 hours standing up in my life time.

Saturday and Sunday we had divisions with our sister-training leaders. I was with Hermana Corrales, who is from Costa Rica and has 17 months in the mission.  She is super great, and it was a great learning experience for me.

We still don't have any baptisms planned for this month, but today we are going to visit an ex-investigator of Hna Perez that gets along with me really well and we are going to try and commit her to baptism.  The ex-investigator is names Runia.  Evidently she had some problems with the missionary that was here before me.  But I've only talked with her 3 times and every time she wants to give me things/gifts.  I don't know why! Evidently she's never offered anything to Hna Perez and her other companion.

We've been trying to serve the members here a lot.  They are really great, but we are trying to win their confidence more.

While we were searching for a street contact-s house we found an ex-investigator, Karla.  She accepted a baptism date for April 11th.  And I think she's going to progress, which is great.

We have an investigator named Angie, and after we taught about the formation of the church while Christ was on the earth and the great apostasy we committed her to baptism.  She accepted, but said "I'll only be baptized April 11th if I know for certain that the person that is going to baptize me has the authority of God."  It was super awesome to hear her say that, because we could see that she understood the importance of the Priesthood, which so many of our investigators don't understand.

The branch president and his wife support us a lot, which is great!

Next week is transfers, and I'm pretty sure Hna Perez is going to leave, as she already has 4 transfers here.  We'll see what happens!

Love you all!  Les Quiero.

Hermana Bratt

A Ward Missionary Activity. We are playing the flour game! Runia is the one in pink.

Me and Hermana Corales

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Growing Up in Nicoya

Dear Family,

First things first, Britani and Maryori were baptized!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (My old investigators from Turrialba).  I don't know the details but Hna Samayoa sent me a picture that I'll forward to you all.  I am super super happy.  I only wish I could have been there to support them and experience this amazing change with them.

As for things here in Nicoya, well this week I've felt like I've finally started growing up.  President Wilkinson came for a zone conference.  I was on the front row in the middle, and felt the Spirit so strongly the full 3 hours.  I can't believe I only have 9 months left.  This can't be happening.  I have so many things to do still! 

Hermana Wilkinson told us that we have to start visiting old investigators and asking them to return their Books of Mormon.  If they don't want to return them they'll need to accept us back into their homes.  She said, quoting the Are presidency,that "The Lord has prepared SOMEONE to have that book."

It has been a little hard getting a long with my companion, but this week has been a lot better and we are working a lot better together, which I know helps us a ton, because it's been hard to feel the spirit in our lessons.  

We've started serving the members this week a lot in order to gain their confidence and trust more.  Slowly but surely we've started receiving a few referrals.  

We found a few new investigators this week and they accepted baptisms dates.  They even looked really promising, but already problems have come up.  We don't have anyone that is ready to be baptized, but I know we are going to see miracles.  We just have to work harder and be more obedient.

This week we have a multizone conference with Elder Alonso, so right now we are in San Jose.  We are going to sleep over at the Hermanas house so that we can go to the conference tomorrow morning.  Today we went to Price Smart which is like Costco but with a different name.  I bought Honey Nut Bunches of Oats.  YUMMY.

I don't have much time today and this computer is AWFUL.  I can't type fast.  The computer screen is above my head!  But thank you EVERYONE who emailed me or has written me these past months.  I just received some more Christmas and Happy Birthday cards.  If I don't respond to your emails today I will next P-day!


Hermana Bratt

Honey Bunches of Oats!!!

Eating at Taco Bell