Thursday, September 25, 2014


Thursday, September 18, 2014

Dreaming in Spanish!!

SO WOOOWWW SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED! I feel like that sentence will always be at the start of ALL my emails haha!


So the spanish dreams have started this week haha!... the first night I dreamt a man was talking to me in spanish and I couldnt respond and I found myself awake in my bed trying to speak spanish! haha.  The next few nights I ended up talking to this person in Spanish and I remember one night bearing testimony of the book of mormon and jospeh smith.  And then on wednesday one of my roommates told me that I was sleep talking in spanish for the last 3 nights... whoops haha! Thats embarassing, I wish I could have heard all that I said.  I don't know why people say your fluent when you dream in spanish though, because I am definitely not there yet haha!  But hey, if dreaming in Spanish allows me to keep practicing my Spanish even if I'm not awake, than I won't complain... I will take all the practice I can get =) !!

So proselitismo (proselyting) was basically the greatest thing since sliced bread! It was so special! Hermana Perez and I ended up having 20 contacts and 7 lessons and 7 references. It was amazing! Holy cow, this is what the mission is all about! =) !!

I would love to tell you about every experience but there isnt enough time haha - so I'll fill you in on as many as I can, (Mom I forwarded you an email that 3 of the guys we taught sent me =) See below) The short one with the red and blue collared shirt was named Bernardo and the really big guy is named Ulises, and dang it... I cant remember the other man's name (Rodolfo)... BUT THEY WERE AMAZING!  Hermana Perez and I decided to walk down one street just for the heck of it, and as we are walking we notice there was a garage open on the otherside of the street and there were 3 men inside. We said hi from across the road and were going to keep on walking but we felt like "You know what, its siesta time... no ones out... lets go and talk to them for a minute"... So we end up going over. These men were the NICEST men I have ever met, they grabbed us chairs, invited us to sit down and we spent a solid 20 minutes just getting to know them, and them getting to know us, by the time the 35 minute mark rolled around we felt that we should get going.  So, we asked if we could leave them with a message before we headed out.  We just shared a quick message about our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and just how much They love us, how They love and know every single one of us.  Our Heavenly Father knows us and wants to help us. He loves us so much that He blessed us with the ability to pray and.... Next thing I know, Bernardo cuts us off and says "Wait, can we pray?.... Like right now?"  Hermana Perez and I looked at each other with big happy eyes and told him "Of course!"  So taught them how to pray and then left with a prayer!  And this Saturday we get to go back to the exact same area, so we planned a second visit!  They wanted the address to the church, they wanted the local missionaries numbers... they even wanted to walk Hermana Perez and I back to our bus because the area was actually fairly dangerous. (Like every family or person we talked to told us to be careful becuase 'there were men who pulled guns on their neighbors that morning' or 'somebody who robbed someone an hour ago'... it was interesting.  But the whole time I felt so protected =) !!

The other man we spoke to THAT I LOVE! was named Damian.  He was just sitting on the street, he seemed about 25.  We started conversing with him and he just had such a special spirit about him, such a humble spirit, a spirit that was sweet and genuine and wanted to have some truth and direction in his life... You could tell he wasn't necessarily surrounded by people that would help him find it.  So we began talking to him and had him tell us about himself, about his family, religious background.  It turns out that his family had never gone to church and he was ready to try going.  He began asking us questions and we were able to begin bearing testimony to him and sharing a folleto with him.  As soon as we pulled out the folleto though, a guy hopped out of his car to get Damian for work... this guy was a huge distraction becuase he was all like "woah, I thought that was you Damian, but I saw you were surrounded by 2 girls and I thought.... Really? that's new blah blah blah" you get the idea.  So hermana Perez and I kind of paired off  with both of them right there, she was able to talk and distract the friend while I was able to have a few more moments with Damian.  I gave him a folleto about the Plan of Salvation and he told me that he wanted to read it and he wanted to come to church.  So we parted ways leaving him with a folleto and testimony... and while yes, I was bummed that our time was cut short with him, I could feel the desire he has to know his Heavenly Father and I could feel that desire beginning to work in him.  All the people we taught and gave commitments to are in my prayers like crazy.

The coolest thing about proseletismo was that we really just became aware of how special every single person is to Heavenly Father.  Every soul is special and every person has a purpose and plan.  I could see it, I could feel it! And while we were out walking on the streets, even though there were people who didn't want to hear our message, or their were people who ignored us when we said hi... it didn't matter... Because those people that we taught - I couldnt get them out of my head... All I could see was them dressed in white, preparing to enter a baptismal font, and all I could see was the joy on their faces and their Heavenly Father smiling down at them because of the choice they are making!  It was so special to look at all these people in Banfield Argentina and see them as our Savior would.  Granted, I cannot fully comprehend just how much our Savior loves us and granted, it would be impossible for me as a mortal being to love someone with the same capacity our Heavenly Father can love us.  But what insight it was to be able to witness and feel a glimpse of the love our Heavenly Father has for us - and what he sees when he looks at us =) !  Like a painting, on our own, we can only create ourselves a smudge on a canvas, but the Lord, with Him and His gospel... he will create us a masterpiece =) !

Hermana Fardos

PS. This pciture of Hermana Perez and I basically sums up our compnionship...Haha! I'm the goofy one and she is an angel, I am so grateful to be paired with her!

Oh and Dad... We do service projects as a district every week, and our job this week was to power wash all of the walkways.... I was the only person who knew how to use a power washer!  Haha!  None of the Elders had ever heard of one, let alone used one...  So, just know that, Thanks to you, I got to teach 10 Elders how to use one ;) !!

Oh, and now my name is Hermana Barbie... according to the latinos... don't quite know how that name came about... but yeah, thats a thing! Haha!

Following is the letter and photos sent to Lauren from the gentleman she talked to when she was proselyting.

Hola Lauren y Summer;
Quiero darles las gracias por habernos visitado en nuestro local, pasamos un momento muy agradable y además pudimos orar juntos.
Deseo que alguna vez vuelvan y si lo hacen las esperaremos con mate amargo y pasta frola de membrillo (como le gusta a Lauren).
Les envio las fotos que hicimos hoy.
Les mando un cariñoso beso a ambas, espero que la pasen bien en mi país y en mi barrio y quedo a vuestra disposición en mi correo electrónico o en mi perfil de Facebook.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Hey Familia!

Hey familia! 

What an amazing week its been... there's always so much to say and not enough time to say it!

So this last week all of the 2 weekers left, which was pretty crazy because that meant now there was only our group in the CCM... only 30 of us left... we kind of felt like we ruled the place! Hahaha. I was so sad they left though because they are literally the sweetest, kindest, most loving and patient people ever! And I miss not getting to practice my Spanish with all the hermanas in my room. But today there is supposed to be a lot more new missionaries and I'm hoping that there will be some latina hermanas in my room again! =) 

Oh and one huge cool thing thats about to happen!! WE GET TO GO PROSELYTING THIS WEEK! WHAAT?!?!?! Im so excited! we were given the maps of areas that we will be proselyting in and Hermana Perez and I have a whole 40 blocks to ourselves for a whole day! I literally cant wait! It will be such a good opprotunity to practice Spanish and figure out what I need to keep working on!

CCM X has been great, now that that group of elders have left I've taken over the position of coming up with the group workouts and Holy cow it's been great. We love feeling so sore and tired because we feel like it justifies the pasta frola, alfajores, and melanesa we eat almost every day! Haha... whoops!

When we went through the temple last p day we met this one sister who had a package to deliver at the CCM (kind of like we did with TJ)  it was so fun talking with her and she was the sweetest thing ever! She ended up giving us some dulce de leche, the brand was vaquita? It was pretty life changing... I enjoyed every bite! Ha!

There is a hermana here who has such a talent when it comes to braiding, so she goes through every week giving us hermanas the craziest and coolest braids... I'll try and attach the photos! =)

The other day Hermana Porter (the tall one) Hermana Dowdle (the one with the short wavy hair, Hermana Perez and I have been having fun trying to play around with self timers on camers and weve been trying to take some fun pictures as if we are the Beatles walking down Abbey Road or were trying to take pixctures of us all jumping at the same time... They all just ended up looking super awkward... but I think that's what has made those pictures my favorites! Ha! I forget how weird I am some times. :)

So as I mentioned, there are a ton of new missionaries that are coming today... but there were 3 that came yesterday! One was a hermana from Peru! And I got to spend the whole time talking to her =) which was so fun... She speaks WAYYYY faster than any of the last hermanas, so it's super nice having to try and tune my ears to new speeds of speech! The languiage barrier has been getting thinner and thinner, and with each day that goes by it becomes easier to initiate a conversation, speak faster, and to better my vocabulary... DONT GET ME WRONG THOUGH, MY SPANISH STILL HAS A LONNNGGGG WAY TO GO BEFORE ITS WHERE I WANT IT TO BE!

On a spiritual note, this week has ben so amazing. I dont think I've ever cried so much in one week. I have just been so overwhelmed with gratitude, so much so that I have been brought to tears multiple times. The Atonement is real you guys, Jesus Christ is real. Our Heavenly Father is real and loves us so much! And that capactiy that He has to love us is unfathomable (spelling?). I am so humbled and grateful to have little remiders of just how much he loves us and just how much he loves us to delight in this gospel we have been provided with, and just how much he loves us to come unto him to repent and find forgivenss and love through the atonement that has been made possible through our older brother Jesus Christ.

God is good my friends =) 

I'm sorry if my update is all over the place! I love you guys so much!!

Until next week!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Buen Dia!!!!!!


Wow wow wow... there is so much to tell and such little time..... Gahh, I'll do my best to get in as much as I can =)!!

The CCM life has been way fun! When I first arrived they had me as a 2 weeker, which meant I would be in an all latino District, I would have a latin companion and I would have all Spanish speaking teachers and in 2 weeks I would hop on a plane and head out to Paraguay. This was a super enticing and intimidating offer. On one hand I was stoked because that would put me out in the mission field so fast and I wouldn't have to spend all this time in the CCM. But it was my choice as to whether I wanted the 6 weeks here or the 2 weeks... so I prayed about it and felt that while the 2 weeks would be so doable, it would also be so stressful and being able to go over grammar and learn at a pace where I can truly have the Spirit with me as I go ended up being what was important to me - so I chose the 6 weeks. And I am very happy I did, the relationships I have developed here are so great. The world just keeps getting smaller and smaller! =)

I have 6 people total in my room. One is from Chile, one is from Argentina, two are from Brazil, one is from Peru, and one is from Virginia.... and then there's me. The first night was hilarious, (between the sisters who spoke Portugese, the sisters who spoke Spanish and Hermana Perez and I who spoke English (with some Spanish) it turned into a Spanish based conversation with some Portugese, some English, and a lot of charades! Haha!

Hermana Perez is my companion and I love her to death, she is from Virginia! Her parents met on their missions in Chile so she grew up around some Spanish too. We have made a promise that in our rooms were only going to speak in Spanish and so far its been great, we understand just about every single thing the Hermanas say and now its just on us to formulate responses and its been getting easier and easier=) these hermanas leave for their missions next Thursday though. So I am so sad to see them go but they are going to do an important work and I can't wait to meet the new latina companions I'll have in my room!!!

Now Im going to tell you guys a little bit about how happy the food makes me..... shocker right? Hahaha. We have had melanesa, we have had those really yummy crossaint that are called media lunas? I think, weve had alfajores and flan for dessert, weve had just about everything yummy and delicious in this world... and with every meal I have a whole plate full of cucumbers.... they are just so good I cant help it. :) The hermanas are convinced that if all I could eat was cucumbers alone, that I would be just fine. Haha.

Every day we have one hour to work out or do something "physical" outside. SO this girl named Hermana Porter (she goes to BYU too and we have sooo many mutual friends, I'm surprised I never met her) and I decided we really watned to work out, like get in a real workout. So we and a huge group of Elders do CCM X everyday (it's the MTC version of P 90X) Haha, and then afterwards we run and I've been doing pullups on the goal crossbar =) so thats way fun. Ha!!

And while being here has been so fun and there are so many laughs in our own dorm rooms, in the class rooms, outside and at meals... there is also such a special spirit here. The hymns that we sing in Spanish invite the Spirit  unlike anything has ever before, sometimes I want to cry because it is so sweet. The way the scriptures have been speaking so directly to us has been amazing, we share scriptures with eachother all day and you would think that yiou would find our names in there because the verses are so applicable. And the love you feel for your investigators that you teach is so strong. We have IPs every week (which are progressive investigators, they are real profiles of real people but they are acted out by our teachers and we are companionships take turns teaching them). Hermana Perez and I taught this girl named Micol, we had some great lessons with her and she was commited to baptism but her Dad wasn't supportive of it at all and so when we met with her on the 3rd visit she told us she didnt want to be baptized right now because it was to hard with the way things were at her parents house. My heart broke for her and Hermana Perez and I just dropped our notes and bore our testimonies about the blessings that come through being baptized and recieving constant companionship of the holy ghost. About how it is hard to see how joing the church could be a blessing when her dad isnt so supportive but how the blessings are there. And we just tried to convey the feelings of our heart (which is a little tricky with this language barrier... gospel spanish is all soooo new still). And all though it was hard to find the words, we felt that the spirit really conveyed the message we were sharing and the truths that were being testified of. And that has been such a blessing. Im so grateful that it is the spirit that converts people to the doctrine. I am so grateful that I get to be that mouth piece and that tool to help bring this knowledge, this happiness to the people. This calling we have as missionaries is so humbling, it is such a huge and important calling and I know why it has to be done =) The church is so true you guys!

It was so great to see all the emails in my inbox this morning, keep them coming you guys =) I love reading them! Keep on making those good choices and being those amazing people you are! until next week =)

Lots of love,
Hermana Fardos