Monday, 4 August 2014

In His Strength, I Can Do All Things

I can't believe that this is the last week that I´ll be emailing you all as a set apart missionary in the Dominican Republic. I´m not really sure what to say that will do justice to everything that has happened or all that I have learned.

This year and a half has been full of experiences, joy that I can't even put into words and times that I was sure I wouldn't be able to move forward. But I came to recognize that the moments I thought would break me never did, my Heavenly Father pushed me to the very very edge to show me my own strength, to help me to grow and if he hadn't taken me to that breaking point I would never have recognized the things I was capable of, it's a funny thing to think about, but looking back from my new perspective I´m really grateful that He loved me enough to do so.

But I also came to the realization that the mission really isn't the end. That it's just a starting point to a lot of things to come. I´ve got a lot of desire and excitement to be able to apply all that I have learned in each an every ward that I join, I´ve gained a new perspective that I know I didn't have before the mission and when I recognize things like that everything is okay.

My mission isn't meant to last forever, but the things that I have learned are meant for just exactly that.

I´ve learned to love a whole new group of people, I´ve found family that speaks a whole different language but that I love just the same, I´ve sweated, I´ve studied and I´ve prayed, and now my Heavenly Father has a new journey to take me on, and just like the mission, I´m going to have to take it on faith, and leave the rest to him.

Love you all and see you soon,
Hermana Coe

For our brethren, the Lamanites were in darkness, yea, even in the darkest abyss, but behold, how many of them are brought to behold the marvelous light of God! And this is the blessing which hath been bestowed upon us, that we have been made instruments in the hands of God to bring about this great work.

Behold, thousands of them do rejoice, and have been brought into the fold of God.

Behold, the field was ripe and blessed are ye, for ye did thrust in the sickly, and did reap with your might, yea, all the day long did ye labor; and behold the number of your sheaves! And they shall be gathered into the garners, that they are not wasted.

But Ammon said unto him: 
I do not boast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; 
but behold, my joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joy, 
and I will rejoice in my God.

Yeah, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak;
therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, 
for in his strength I can do all things; 
yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land,
for which we will praise his name forever. 
Alma 26:3-5, 11-12

Monday, 16 June 2014

We walk, we sweat, and we enjoy it! :-)

Note from Sue:  I kinda fell off the blog-wagon a few months ago when I got overwhelmed keeping up two blogs :-)  Sorry...but Kenzie requested that I put up a few pics from the last little while, cuz whenever she emails anyone a pic, they can't open it!  Well...everyone except for MEEEEEE!! Where's there's a will, there's a WAY!!  And I wasn't about to not be able to see my sweet girl.  So, here you go! Good thing a picture's worth a know :-)

Cooking!  Making Johnny caycays, (haha I´m sure that that's not how it's spelled, but that's how it sounds) with one of my FAVORITE member families. They have the cutest 4 little girls and do sooooo much in our ward. Someday when we come and visit we are stopping by their house. 

I cooked yucca with salami frito!

today I went to a dominican salong and did rollers!

haha! 100 percent dominicana 
Ya tu sabes

ahahaha final product!

 Our surprise pineapple themed FHE for Hermana Walker's birthday -- pulled it off without a hitch.  It was AWESOME, and everyone was such good sports :-)
 but I turned my dang pineapple around and forgot to put it back for the pic...  

 sweet sweet members from cancino that I ran into today!
 I looove this little girl's smile! 
never got to say goodbye to them, but it was the coolest
 having them run up to me and give me a hug,
 always nice to know someone remembers you!

 my district -- they always make the us sit in chairs in the front, and I hatteee it!  
I refused to sit there this time, so they decided to take our place ahahaha

thought this was cool, there's 
a pic of my group on the website under Carribean missionaries!

plus, as a bonus - here's her email to us this week!!

hellooo family!

just a quick note for the weekk

This week has been great, we got the transfer call and everything is staying the same! Which means that I will be finishing here in Mendoza with Hermana Flores! So in mission terms, she´ll be killing mee (I always knew that she was secretly an assasin)

This week's brought a superrrr hardcore change in the weather! It has been sooooooooo hot. There are no clouds ANYWHERE in the sky. Luckily I have somewhat adjusted but my companion who comes from the country of year round spring (guatemala) is dying haha. And she hates it when I remind her that this has NOTHING on the weather we´ll be having in august! 

But we walk and we sweat and we enjoy it!

We´ve been dropping a lot of investigators and havent had to much luck finding new ones, buttt the ones that we do have are the best. And I guess its quality not quantity right?

And our sweet sweet investigator Amarily is all set for her fecha the 28th of june! It has been the COOLEST thing to see how prepared she has been to accept this gospel. She grasps everythign that we teach the first time that we say it and by personal decision chose to live the word of wisdom eight years ago and hasnt had a sip of beer or coffee since.

The part that really amazes me though is that just because she has been so prepared doesnt mean that having these values has come easily, she has just as many temptations and trials as anyone else, but she chose to do what she felt was right and has been strong enough to stick to it.

She is a sweet heart, every singlt member that we have brought with us in the lessons just falls in love with her and wants to do whatever they can to support her. It is awesome. A sweet older lady in our ward gave us a bible that she had bought in the temple store(it was for a less active member, but turns out she already has one), so we asked her if she would like to come with us in a lesson and gift it herself. Amarily was overjoyed. She jumped up and gave her a hug thanking her for completing her scriptures and bringing her the word of God. She's excited to search all of the other scriptures that are in ehr pamphlets. It was awesome, she is awesome. Plus the last couple visits shes been waiting for us with icy coca colas. win win win

I dont know if its bad to have favorites butttt.... haha

life is good!
love youuuu all

Thursday, 6 February 2014

No Such Thing as a Coincidence

Hello all! Its been an awesome week, definitely crazy,but I think crazy is more normal than normal out here, if that makes any sense at all.
If there is anything that the mission has taught me it's that there is no such thing as a coincidence. It never ceases to amaze me the poeple that are placed in our path or the trials that we have to face. They always serve a purpose when we are looking back.
So we have this investigator. One day we were knocking doors (which here is more like yelling through gates ¨SALUUUDDOOOOSS, BUENNAAAAS¨) and at the very last house at the verrrry end of our area, we met a man and set an appointment to return. When we came back he wasn´t home, but his nephew who lives above him was. We called him down and honestly from first appearance we didn't really think he would want to talk to us, he had lots of tattoos and earrings, etc., but he ended up being super nice and rad. We ended up talking to him and found out that he had been visited by missionaries before when he was 7 and that his family had visited the church back then. He had awesome memories of the elders who taught him and said that they had lost contact when he moved out to Curacao (island by aruba). So we set a return appointment with thim and invited him to come to the church. 
When we came back for the cita (appt) he wasn't there and we were super bummed, we assumed that we wouldn´t ever see him again. But that very next Sunday he showed up at the church and said he felt really bad for not being there. We set another cita for the next day and it went really well, butttt after that he kinda just fell off the map, wasn't home and didn't answer his phone. So we decided to go back one last time, and lo and behold, he was there, and let us know that some stuff had been going on in his family and so he hadn't been able to go to the church. Andd we found out that he was going to be moving the next day, AND not only that, but he was going to be moving to the same street that we live on, wayyyy closer. But once again after a cita or two he started dissapearing so we decided to stop trying to visit him. This past week (about a week or two later) we were in a cita teaching a brand new awesomeee family we had just found...and guess who comes walking up the stairs to there house and happens to be a close family friend! This samee guy! We were nowhere near where he lives and had no idea they even knew each other.  What are the chances? and we hadn't been even planning on being there that day because we had had to move the cita last minute. So we´re hoping to be able to keep moving forward, anddd just learned from a member, that hadn't seen him since he was little, but was so excited when he showed up that first week, that his mom is a menosactiva. 

Coincidence? yaa no I don´t believe in those things anymore.
So that was basically a big confusing paragraph, but the moral of the story is, when there is something that is meant to be put in our path, Heavenly Father finds a way to put it or him there over and over again even when we are cluelessly walking away.  We´re hoping to start sharing with him again soon, obviously there's a reason for all of the run-ins.

Honestly this transfer has been a really big learning experience for me, its had some major ups and some major downs, but it's pushed me to keep moving forward. We´re never done learning anddd we really can never do it on our own. I know for a fact that I would have never survived the last year without the help of a loving PATIENT and ever present Heavenly Father and the people that he has placed in my path. We really can never be standing still-- time just keeps chugging along! Which is sometimes a super bummer, maybe it could just pause for a little while, like 6 months or so? I mean its only fair, 2 years sounds great--I got lots to do:)
But lots of love to all of you back home.
I know I´m always saying this,

but life really is gooodd
the book is blue
the church is true
and the buckets of rain getting dumped on us
just keep making the trees that much greener:)

have a great week folks

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Happy Birthday to Meee!!

So I have to say that this was seriously one of the best birthdays ever! Who would have thought? I woke up in the morning to our wall decorated with balloons and notes from hna thomas and hna Fox and thenn we went and played soccer! (unfortunately we lost, but it was a blast). 

After we went out and taught, had some really awesome citas and hna Kofe informed every single person that we passed that it was my birthday (embarrassing haha). 

Came home for lunch and opened my packages! (they were suuuuper rad by the way!) and were completely surprised by the girls in Lotes y servicios. They got permission to come to our house at lunch and surprised us at our back window with cake and a super awesome rendition of ¨happy birthday¨. luckily we had made soooooo much food and were able to all share and hang out . It really was the best. 

And afterwards we were able to leave with our ward mission leader for some citas (I told him he couldnt bail and that it was his birthday present to me!) He followed through and we ended the night with my new favorite (and not to mention calorie-filled) food Yaroa! (fries cheese chicken mayo and ketchup) complete with candles that were relighting and impossible to blow out. And ended with a sweet call from my babycakes hna petersen (shes doing awesome by the wayy super proud of my 1st daughter) Nothing like starting out twenty-two and 10 pounds heavierrrrr haha, But I couldn't have asked for anything better, it did not disappoint. So thank you.

So here is my story from this week. The other sisters had a baptism last saturday and we were running around like crazy trying to find our investigators and invite them to come. Everything was falling through. So we quicked and stopped by E´s house. Shes an older woman that we´ve been teaching. She was taught by the elders a long time ago, but found us again and really just seems golden. Every time that we teach her, she is so excited and willing to apply everything immediately without any hesitation. It never ceases to amaze me the amount of faith that she has and the incredible blessings that she has seen because of her willingness to change and grow. So we showed up at her house 15 minutes before the baptism and without having too much hope that she would be able to go on such late notice, we told her about it and asked if she would be interested in going. Without a second thought, or even saying anything to us, she called to her daughter and said ´me voy´, to let her know that she was leaving, and threw on a skirt. It ended up being a really spiritual experience for her and neat to be able to see a baptism. She is always talking about how she feels such a ¨positive energy¨ in our church. She reads, she studies, she sacrafices, and for that very reason, she's received her answer. She's working on a few things, but we´re hoping by the end of the month she´ll be able to be baptized!! It never ceases to amazes me how prepared some people really are for this gospel.

and on a funny note. We were teaching the flia Acosta, and one of the little boys started talking to me and said ¨if you eat a lot one day, you're going to be a princesa gorda¨ and then informed that, in english, that is a ¨fat princess¨. He thought it was hilariouss. Where kids come up with this stuff, I will never know, but they crack me up!

Love you all
Hope you have an awesome week!

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Dear Blog . . .

Dear blog 

I´m sorry I never write.

Its not you, it's me.

Every time I sit down, everything that happened during the week peaces out, and all I can remember are the things I have pictures of.

Although you are being a little needy, if we´re going to be completely honest.

I promise to take notes during the week from here on out because you would not believe the funny and tender little mercies we enjoy every week' 
and I need to be better about sharing.

Remember I´m a work in progress.

But dont worry toooo much because
Life is good.
   the year is new
      the sun is shining
         the stray dogs are barking
            the empanadas are deliciously greasy
               what more could I ask for?

love Hermana Coe

Monday, 13 January 2014

Happy & Healthy (the way mom likes it!)

Transfers came and I´m staying with Hermana Kofe in the same area, but one of the other girls in our house is leaving, and Hermana Thomas, from my CCM district (on the left with the 'thumbs up') is coming to be her comp. It will be so fun to live with her and celebrate our 'one year' together in Feb!
 That makes Hna Kofe my longest comp so far, and I will have only been in two areas for 6 months each by the time next transfers come around!

This week has been a roller coaster; but I'm happy and healthy and up for the challenge to make this a good transfer, and I know that it's in these moments, that we superrrr accelerate and learn tons more!

After 4 hours of playing soccer --
(which, turns out I still really suck at, but it's great exercise & we have a lot of fun playing as a district. They are patient when I kick in the wrong direction & are good enough to make up for me. Also, can I just say, I don't think I've ever used those muscles?  Charley horses like crazy the last couple days - ahaha!), 
we came home and celebrated my
11-month mark -- Time is Flying!!
My companion knows me too well - she got me a Diet Coke
and Midnight Milky Way!
(and you can tell from the angle of this pic, 
kenzie's companion is a tad taller than her!!)

These pics are from a Family Home Evening that we did with Sandy´s family (and some neighbor kids too). We played "Don't Eat Pete" with these nasty mouse gummies, I got as a gag gift!  It was awesome!

Monday, 6 January 2014

Set a baptismal date AND Painted a house :-)

Dear mom and dad -

What the crazy email day --
Katherine is having a boy
Shannon is married

I´m freaking out, I had no idea that Shannon was engaged!  But that is way awesome and she looks super super super cute haha!!  Wish I could have said congrats!  These are the moments when I feel so out of the loop out here!

I´m so glad to hear that everything is going well, and that abbie is doing ok! I sent off a note to her new email last week, but I´m not sure if she's seen it or even written yet today. Dang time difference.

It seriously really weirds me out that she is already gone and started in the ccm. I just can hardly get over how fast time passes -- I'll be 22 soon! Freaking old!

This week has been good, the best part was actually being allowed to do some service, in addition to our normal missionary-sharing-the-gospel service! And the best part is it was PAINTING!  3 times in one week. Crazy right? I just kept thinking about how annoyed I was when we painted our WHOLE house back when we built the addition, and now I basically just feel like a pro from all of that practice. Although, I will say, that the whole time, I was thinking how dad would absolutely die from how un-organized it was. No taping stuff off, and we cut in all the corners SECOND. Haha ... but it was awesome, and they all really appreciated the help.

But we really did have a good week. Set a baptismal date with one of our investigators who is absolutely awesome. She has a lot of challenges coming up (including children who are superrrr unsupportive of her decision) but I think that she really is ready. She came to the church Sunday and said at the end that it was absolutely ¨the best day¨.  I'm so excited. She always has the coolest questions when we teach her and she always teaches back to us what she has learned.

Anddd transfers are coming up at the end of this week! I have 4 and a half months in this area, and for the first time ever, I really really don't want to leave it. It hasn't been easy here, but things are finally starting to settle in, and move forward. It would be a bummer getting transferred right before we get to see the fruits of our labors... but it happens, so I guess I just need to be patient and wait out the calll.

And on a side note, I know you were super stressed about talking at the baptism mom, but I have to say that I understand what you´re feeling because my ward just asked me to speak next sunday on how to give missionaries referrals. I´m super super stressed about doing it all in spanish (I´ve been pretty stressed with mine the last couple of weeks) so we´ll see how it goes. Wish me luck.

Sandy and his family are doing well. They weren't able to come to church this past week, but they listen in every lesson, and they are reading their scriptures, we´re hoping that they can 

Much love,