Monday, July 27, 2015

The Week We Almost Had a Baptism

My new Mission President

So ya we had kind of a crazy week. Tuesday my comp was like we are going to go see Gretel, an antiguo, that knows the church is true. She just can’t be baptized until she quits rugby. She plays every Sunday and can’t come to church. We went and she told us that this Sunday she could come to church. We were sooo excited. We challenged her to be baptized Saturday and confirmed Sunday. This may seem kind of psycho to you guys especially because I had just met her in this moment, but we totally bonded over our shared love for “Greys Anatomy”. So we were best friends from the moment we met. But really, I have never met such a prepared person. She is great. She reads the Book of Mormon all the time, she prays, she just can’t come to church. We read Alma 32. It’s great. It talks about the poor who can’t go to church. She told us she wants sooo bad to be baptized, she just doesn’t know. So then we told her to pray and ask God and we would come back the next day.

The next day I was in divisions and, of course, I was the one in our area. I was kind of freaking out that I was going to blow it and that we shouldn’t be committing her to baptism. It was a lot of pressure. I was also with a sister who has more time than me, so I felt kind of pressured to be a super leader to help her. Anyway, it was basically one of the hardest days in my whole mission. Literally everyone rejected us. I don’t know if you guys have been to South America, but we don’t really get rejected that much. I mean they always listen and offer us water and food and then kindly say they don’t want the message. But we got really, really rejected, multiple times. One lady was like “Yeah, I talked to my husband and we just don’t want to meet with you guys anymore.” So by 5 I was out of people to go see and ideas. We tried contacting, it didn’t work. No one wanted anything. We tried looking for members I didn’t know, but I don’t know the street names so good to find them. haha I told Heavenly Father in my head that if he sent us anyone, I would talk to them. I saw a group of punk kids. I went and invited them to our English classes. They said some gross stuff. Then I saw an old man. ahah I walked past him at first and then I did a little circle back and we had a good 5 min of testifying to him, but in the end he wasn’t interested. I was bummed and just relying so much on this appointment we had with Gretel at 6:30. I called her and she said she couldn’t meet, but she would come to our classes of English. I was crushed. I went to English classes so bummed. I was trying to just focus on the Hermana and love her but I was pretty sad.

Gretel never showed up to the classes, so I decided to call her. She said we could come by, so we did. We read with her from Alma 32 when there are some pretty poor people and they can’t enter the church. Alma says “Do we just worship God on Sundays?” I told her that she was going to be such a light to her teammates and to her friends. We literally had such a spiritual lesson. Hermana Pineda and I taught great together. I was so grateful that it was her that was with me. We went over the baptismal interview questions with Gretel and she had a couple problems. Really she just has problems from the past and she is scared she is going to get baptized and she will fall after. I told her that she will for sure sin after her baptism, but that’s why we have repentance. Well, and the sacrament, but that was hard because she can’t go to church always. Anyway, the moral was that it went great and the spirit was literally so strong. I could see satan fighting with her doubts. It was so hard. I thought for sure she would say yes, but in the end she was still really unsure. It was hard. We went back the next day with Hermana Austin and she was the same.

But it was a huge faith builder for me. Just that God really sends us when they need us. Hermana Pineda at the end of the day told me that the day we had was just what she needed. I was shocked. She told me my attitude was exactly what she needed. She said they are struggling right now too and she just saw how we should respond when we are struggling. I was so humbled. I was about to have a really mad talk with God about why he didn’t help me out today. haha But instead, I told Him I am so glad He is in charge of everything because he really knows so much better than me. It was a hard week. We had a lot of rejection, but we worked really hard and I am just so grateful to be here in the mission.

Quick story, we found a girl last Monday who was great. We put her with a date and came back to meet her mom and her mom was like “We are Catholic”. haha So then we started teaching them both. I can’t tell you guys how drastic was the change in her mom. She told us she would come to church and they did and afterwards she said she loved it!!! GOD REALLY can change hearts ... but sad news. They moved today, but she said she still wants to come to church next week. We will see.... It’s kind of complicated. I was kind of bugged with God but then I realized at least they got a change to go to the true church and feel the spirit and love. She said that everyone was so welcoming and I just know she felt the spirit. I don’t think they will get baptized with us, but I know that all of that wasn’t for nothing. I am so grateful we just get to be examples every day!!!!

Fun fact: It’s still really freakishly cold. I don’t know if you guys know, but I never sleep with pants at home and here I sleep with pants, socks, a long-sleeved shirt and a hoodie and like 3 blankets. It’s insane and our hot water stopped working.We woke up without water so we had to wash our hair with a bucket... good times. I am just loving the mission and my comp. I hope she doesn’t get changed this week. I will cry!!!!!!

I love you all so much. Just enjoy every day and look for the milagros (miracles).

Hermana Ball

Sunday, July 26, 2015

ROHAYHU PABLO y WANILDA (written July 20, 2015)

It’s been soooo cold this week. Monday and Tuesday just rained and rained and rained. But we just enjoyed it. 


 So I would like to tell a story about a little boy named Pedro. His mom accepted a date in a contact and then my comp taught them in divisions and said they were great.  Then I tried to pass by when I was in divisions and the mom wasn’t that great.... so then we kind of started to give up on them but then Sunday a member told us that she knows a lady that’s son is always home alone. She wants him to go to church and my comp was like “is the boy named Pedro” and she was like yes! So we took that as a huge sign that we shouldn’t give up on this little boy. I know that seems like a little thing, but really it was a huge milagro (miracle) for me to see that sometimes we just give up so easily. It’s hard when we aren’t always together when we teach, but still I’m glad God is helping us know who we need to be patient with. 


So lately we have found a pattern in the antiguo investigadores aquĆ­ (here). They all are sooo great. We have three. I am naming the three doughts because they are sooo great. They have been to church, they have read, they just have doubts. They don’t know if it’s true. We are trying hard to help them but we are really out of ideas. They are some people we feel like God is saying “just be patient”. Our new president told us it took him 6 months to be baptized and now he is a mission president! When he went to Salt Lake he saw his missionary and he said after 20 years this missionary saw the fruit of his mission. So I just realized we just have to keep going with these three, we are going to just be patient. They could use some prayers. Their names are Pilar, Juan, and Ivan.


We had interviews with president this week. It was soooo great, mine went so great. I love him so much. He just speaks with so much love. He told me a lot of things I just needed to hear. He is really going to be a great help for the mission, I can tell!


So this Sunday, like always, we had rocking plans to get our people to church!! We thought for sure 2 of the 3 doughters would be there, but then we got there and nope they weren’t. Then to put it worse Pablo wasn’t either and we were soooo sad, but then he came in and I just wanted to cry. We also had 3 less active families at church so we were happy, but the best part is Pable received the priesthood!!!! I just was so happy, I forgot about the fact we didn’t have anyone new. We went to their house that night and they told us that they had been fighting and they almost didn’t come. Pablo said I learned my lesson though, satan just didn’t want me there because of the huge blessing I got. haha They told us they had been fighting over who could use the oven to cook us something. haha They love us sooo much. They always call us their daughters and angels. I love them sooo much. He is just a convert that gets it. I’m so grateful that I got to come there and meet him. So just learn from Pablo. If things are really hard it’s probably for a reason. Satan knows that something great is about to happen, just have faith to keep going. I love you all so much. My mom informed me I never explained what Rohayhu means. It’s “I love you” in Guarani. Here, when they want to speak more intimately they speak in Guarani. I love it. I love you all and you’re in my prayers. Just keep looking for the daily milagros. 



Hermana Ball 


Sunday, July 19, 2015

El Papa (written July 13, 2015)

So yes, my title is the Pope because he came to Paraguay this week. For months we have been hearing about this grand coming. It was a little difficult but it was actually kind of great because it was a good way to find all the non-Catholics, but people were definitely a little ruder to us this week. We contacted this reference we got and an old man came out and I asked him his name and he was like “why do you need to know?” haha Then we tried to tell him that God loves him and that we just share a message about Jesus and how we can become better people. He was like haha “ya we are all ready as good as we are going to get, that’s why we have the pope here to visit us.” haha It was just funny. My comp when we left was like “thanks for your friendship” haaha I love her. We were also talking to a girl at her house and her mom came out and was like “just tell them we are Catholics and that’s it. We’re done.” haha It was better in Spanish, but I’m pretty use to rejection by now. It doesn’t even really make me flinch. 

We also met President Wilson this week!!! Our new mission president from Uruguay. He is so great. We had a big zone conference, I loved it. He said a lot of the answers to my prayers. He told us that we aren’t given callings because of what we have done but because of what we are GOING to do. That was such an answer to why I’m a sister leader. I don’t feel like I have done anything good but I guess I’m going to do a lot of good ... I hope. 

So this week hermana austin and I were really trying to be better in everything. We were looking for new investigators, new ways to find people. We changed just how we were doing things because what we were doing before wasn’t working. We had a lot more success this week and we are just getting really excited. We found some really great people this week, but... no one came to church. That was hard but I really thing Heavenly Father is trying to help us learn something so we are going to try and learn this fast so we can start having people at church again. 

I just wanted to say a little thing about how great my companion is. I don’t know if you all know but every Thursday we do weekly planning and at the end you do an inventory of how you are doing in your relationship and she and I are always like “we are good”. then we start complementing the other and then the last two weeks we were just really open about our feelings and as we talked we found that we had things we could work on individually and together. I just love that we are just so in tune to how we can be better. The only hard part is that we aren’t together every day because of splits with the sisters so it’s always so sad. But honestly she is just so great I am learning so much from her. We are a really good team. She just knows how to finish my thoughts perfectly in every lesson. BEST COMPANIONSHIP EVER. I hope she doesn’t get transferred in two weeks. I will cry like a baby.

Last thought, Pablo is doing great. He came to church Sunday and we had a lesson with him. I love teaching him because he just gets everything. He loves us so much. In the night he called us and he was just like “how are you”, then his wife took the phone and said he was worried about us and couldn’t be settled until he called. He is seriously the best. We taught about the priesthood and he is going to start preparing to get it! I love them soooo much!!! 

That’s all. We taught a lot of lessons, I gave a talk Sunday. Overall it was just another cold week in Paraguay but with the difference that the Pope was here, haha but he is gone now ... how sad.

Love you,

Hasta ver,

Hermana Ball
The whole mission at President's goodbye party.

America (written July 6, 2015)

Pablo's baptism

Happy 4th of July!!!! I was a little trunky for America on Saturday! But it was so fun being with an American. We talk all about our family traditions, and we made a way good meal!!! I will send pictures. Other than that, it was a pretty normal day. But I thought a lot about all of you. I think maybe I was just trunky this whole week. I don’t know why. Well, I think I do because Monday in the night we got a call saying that we needed to be in Asuncion Tuesday for a big goodbye party for president. We knew he was leaving, but we didn’t know about the party. It was soooo fun because it was the whole mission! I saw all my companions that are still on the mission (which is all of them except for my trainer), poor hermnana paredes, when she saw me she just fell into my arms crying. She had good news. A reference we got together got baptized!!!! It was such a miracle. Lots of people who are now in my areas told me stories like that. I saw the fruits of what happened when I left my old areas. I really made more of a difference then I thought. The one thing was somewhere in all the excitement I started speaking English and then this whole week I was just really bad at getting back on the Spanish train. I’m going to be so much better this week. This reunion just really threw us all out of whack. I also traveled twice this week. Wednesday and Friday I worked in different areas with the sisters while my comp was in our area with their companions. Both sisters I was with were Americans and maybe that’s why my bad English spree continued. Anyway it was really great. I love seeing new parts of Paraguay. It’s crazy how you can go 20 minutes in one direction and its soooo different! The split on Wednesday was one of my friends from the MTC so that was way cool being with her!!! We found some way cool miracles. I’m excited for our follow up with her to see how things went.
So wait, I’m being confusing. Tuesday was crazy because we went to the reunion and then Wednesday we got up and went strait to Ytororo to visit hermana richards from my group. I came home Thursday.  In the morning we did planning and worked in our area then Friday we got up and went to Lucerito which is where my MTC comp, hermana rosa, started her mission. So that was cool to be in her area. The sister there now is named hermana lilly from weber county and she is sooo cool, we got along way good, we had so much fun. In the night we started talking and she just let out a lot of stuff I think had been bothering her but it was good but also bad because I basically didn’t sleep. Then we had to get up early the next day and go to Guarambare to do suprise studies. It was way fun. I was with hermana badger, she is also an American. I shared lots of stuff with her and in the end she said thanks hermana that really helped me. I don’t know, it’s kind of crazy right now and I feel like I am never in my area and that’s hard. But I think I’m really helping the sisters or at least I’m really trying to!
The other reason I think we were trunky this week was because it was soooo cold. I feel like it was the coldest it’s been. One day I slept in 2 pairs of pants, a long sleeved shirt with a hoodie and gloves and socks. I never sleep like that in Utah, but it’s just such a humid cold and our house has no insulation and I only have like 2 blankets but with all that I was perfectly fine. It’s just sooo hard to get up in the morning and take a shower in our luke-warm shower or sometimes our shower is so hot you can’t put your whole body in, but I’m not complaining. I’m really so happy!!!!!!

The worst part of being a sister leader is not being with hermana austin all the time so when we are together we just want to talk and its bad because we don’t sleep sometimes and we are always getting up early. But whatever, I can sleep after the mission. The other thing was I started talking about my CNA job this week so I was kind of missing all my old patients so much. I think Heavenly Father caught on because Saturday we found 3 really sweet old people. One of them is named Ana. She is a less active member and she doesn’t have a leg. I love her so much, I just wanted to live with her and take care of her because she doesn’t have anyone to clean her up. We passed by in the night and I was talking to her through her window because it was just a sheet. This night was sooo cold, she was trembling and I asked if she needed another blanket. She said haha its so funny in guarani but I don’t know how to explain it well in English but she just said like que piko va hacer, haha (just like what are you going to do about it) basically haha. So then I just promised her I was going to come back with something to help her. so I left and honestly I didn’t know what we were going to do, but we thought of a member we could ask. Honestly, this was just a testimony builder to me that if we just tell God we are going to do something and then ask him how, he will help. The member was so great and she gave us one and we ran back to her. I told her we had the blanket and she was like just come in. Her door doesn’t even lock. It was sad, she didn’t have lights so we used our phone to find her and I put the blanket on her. I felt like such a huge wave of love for her. I could feel it doesn’t matter that she lives in this old dusty house that smells bad. God still is aware of her needs and we have to help her. I tried to get some members to help her but they all said she is just crazy and they had tried in the past to help, she will just sell that blanket you gave her. It bugged me. Why should we stop trying to help people?  I just felt so close to Jesus Christ. In that moment I felt like I was really his representative to these people, doing what he would do if he was here. I didn’t do anything special. It was just what he would have done, love them. haha I rubbed her arms with the blanket and she was like ahhh that’s so nice, thank you. Then she was like, are you trying to flirt with me? haahha We passed her house the next day and she was like “I slept so good last night all warm in my bed, but this sister is kind of crazy. She was flirting with me in the night” hahaha I love her so much. I also tried to rub her little nub with the blanket because it was so cold. I was like “where is your other leg?” She was like ahhh ya where is it? hahaha She doesn’t have one. haha She was like “It’s gone” haaha She is kind of crazy, but I love her and I know God doesn’t stop loving us when we go a little crazy.

But ya, we are just trying to find new people right now to teach. It’s kind of hard. We do have one man that’s great, Juan Jose. He knows everything. He just doesn’t get that the Church of Jesus Christ is the only church that has the power to baptize. So we have been trying to help him with that. When we taught him yesterday I felt like we were teaching like the Book of Mormon says “with power and authority”. I felt like it was really the spirit teaching not me. Honestly, Heavenly Father is helping me so much be everything I am. I had so many great moments during splits when I just knew that I wasn’t the one giving this counsel to the sisters, it was Heavenly Father. I feel like I’m finally learning to be a tool in his hands. I’m still not perfect. Sometimes I don’t listen well enough but I feel like it’s happening a lot more often than it used to. I know that it’s just a result of faith, really we just have to have faith and put all our confidence in Him and watch Him work the miracles through us. I love you all and I hope you all have a great warm week while I’m here freezing.


Hermana Ball
4th of July!!!  Soooo cold I couldn't take my gloves off.  I was so cold!!!

Our churchie meal for the 4th. I was in heaven.  It's been forever since
I ate a pork chop and mashed potatoes. The only thing better would be
green beans, but they don't have that here.

Pablo and Wanilda
This is Rita, a really awesome member. She hates
pictures so she was trying to get away. But I got one.
She is so great!