Monday, July 17, 2017

It's Gonna Take a Miracle...

Well transfers are a week from today, and since I am finishing training Hna Mannewitz, it is very likely that I will leave my area. Do not want to leave Limache: the members, my investigators and Hermana Mannewitz!

Pero Bueno, this week we finally met Presidente and Hermana Orquera. They are amazing! Presidente is super excited and a great vision of what he wants to accomplish in Salta. After our conference, I think everyone was pumped and excited to work. He told us that every morning we should wake up and say "we are going to invite everyone to repent and be baptized. Who are we going to baptize this week?" Hermana Orquera is the Mom that I needed in the mission. Super sweet and caring. Super excited for this new change in our mission!

This week during weekly planning, the hermana leaders showed up to verify our planning session. Most awkward thing ever. They just sat behind us and WATCHED us. They even took notes. But then they said that we plan really well, so that's cool.

We taught a guy that is in his 20s, and at the end of the lesson, I was getting ready to invite him to be baptized. I asked him, "Manuel, do you want to follow Jesus Christ in your life?" After having to think about this question so simple, he responds, "Umm, Im not sure." Then I respond with just a little too much sass, "You're not sure?!! If you are not going to follow Christ, then WHO are YOU GOING TO FOLLOW?!!" I think my compa's jaw dropped! But hey, our leaders said we need to be direct. And he ended up accepting baptismal date, so all is well. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

My comp and I were able to watch 17 Miracles because we always have 15-20 minutes in the night right before bed or in the morning eating breakfast. But WOW! How grateful I am for the pioneers. They sacrificed so much, and it reminded me that I really have no room to complain about ANYTHING. I am so blessed.

We saw a HUGE miracle this week. Maria Emilia is preparing to be baptized, but on Tuesday we talked with her Mom and her Mom was completely against her getting baptized. She said, "Absolutely not!" We didn't know what to do because obviously she needs the permission and support of her family. So my compa and I decided to do a special fast. My Mom told me that my stake, Provo Utah Wasatch Tongan Stake, was doing a special fast for me and all missionaries from our stake serving all over the world. We fasted right along with them.  The day we finished our fast, we went to see Maria Emilia and she was so excited because she said that her Mom had a change of heart. Maria Emilia couldn't even explain what caused this sudden change of attitude in her Mom. But Hermana Mannewitz and I know that the Lord was able to soften her heart. It was the only explanation! And so the Mom signed the permission slip and Maria Emilia will be baptized soon! Hermana Mannewitz and I almost cried, we literally skipped away...HOLDING HANDS! Pure happiness! The mission is oh so good and fasting really brings miracles.

Thank you to the members of my stake back home for fasting for me and other missionaries. We could feel the power and support of the fast. I know that through prayer and fasting that we were able to experience this miracle! I love you all. Alofa tele...Ofa 'atu!

I received a package from home this past week, and my mother knows exactly what I needed. Letters and FOOD! She vacuum packed SWIG cookies! Genius! After 3 weeks, they are still good! We are slowly eating them and savoring every bite! Gracias Mom and fam! ♥

Hope everyone has a swell week. Be kind to one another.

๐Ÿ’™Hermana Norman
Kids love misioneras
Sandra Flores
Familia Flia Cueto
Bumper cars! Fun...but brought my vertigo back!
My face when Neverland was closed! jaja
After watching 17 Miracles I felt the need to do this...video might be below
video


Monday, July 10, 2017

"More than conquerors through Him that loved us"

Maria Emilia is our new investigator that we found a couple weeks ago and she is progressing really well, and is preparing to be baptized in the next couple of weeks. She is 14 years old, her family has been inactive for 7 years, and so we are working with the whole family! Please keep Familia Puca en your prayers, especially Maria Emilia!

Also, we are teaching a single Mom with 2 little kids. Her name is Guadalupe, and she was a referral from a member. She knows that the church is true,  but is still waiting to FEEL that it is true. So we are trying to help her feel and RECOGNIZE the Spirit.

And then we have Gloria and Hector, a married couple, grandparents, and they are the sweetest things ever! We have taught them many times and they love listening and learning but when it comes to keeping their commitments, like reading, praying or going to church, they aren't doing so good. Friday we had a lesson and we had to be really straight forward with them. If they weren't willing to ACT, then we couldn't continue visiting them. It was a super spiritual lesson, it was a lesson where it really felt like it wasn't me speaking, but a loving Heavenly Father that are so much for these two people. At the end of the lesson, Gloria says, "I just don't feel I need to attend any church." Broke my heart a little, but we testified then invited them to pray about it. We asked Gloria to say the prayer and mid prayer, she started crying. After the prayer she said that her whole family was tingling. She agreed to pray to know if the church was true. We'll see what happens!

This past week was the 4th of July, and so my companion and I sang all the freedom songs that we could remember. I practiced the national Anthem, but Shakira style, because I still have my dream to sing in the Super Bowl....dreamin' jajaja

But yesterday, July 9th, was independence day for Argentina! God Bless American and Argentina!!

A newlywed couple recently moved into the ward. They are from Buenos Aires and the wife, Feia Scchraifer, is the recent convert that bore her testimony last Sunday that really touched me. We were able to visit them and get to know them better. Her conversion story is absolutely amazing! And even though I have been a member my whole life, I too, have my conversion story. I invite you all to think, write and share with someone your conversion story.

My companion is a gorgeous blonde with very fair skin, and one day, it was unusually warm. So she put on a short sleeve shirt. We walked into a member's home for lunch, and the 7 year old daughter touches my companion's arm with wide eyes and says, "its so white!" She couldn't believe it, had to touch it to make sure it was real. I laughed so hard...jaja

Remember my Korean investigator? I ran into him on Pday and he is doing great! He is ward clerk! Yeah, Francisco!

We have a new mission President, but we still haven't met him or heard from him. But we will have a conference with him on Friday.

Before Presidente Chaparro left, he gave us the challenge to read the entire BoM before the next General Conference. As I have started over, my love and appreciation for this book just keeps growing! Read the Book of Mormon, it truly changes lives!

Many times investigators ask us, "Why does God allow bad things to good, innocent people?" We knows that trials are a test of our faith but are also necessary for our personal growth and strength. Elder Whitney said, " No pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is wasted...all that we suffer and all that we endure, especially when we endure, it patiently builds up our characters, purifies our hearts, expands our souls and makes us more tender and charitable". Sometimes we want to grow and receive more strength. But growth never comes from taking the easy way!

Like it says in Philippians 4:13 "we can do all things through Christ, that strengthen us" and through Christ we can be "more than conquerors" of the trials and challenges that we face in this life. (Romans 8:35, 37)

Happy, happy...life is too good to waste a day being sad!

Hope everyone has an amazing week!

Con Amor,
Hermana Michaela Norman













Wednesday, July 5, 2017

I straightened my hair, so yeah! Something big happened!

July 3, 2017

Okay, lets start with LAST Monday. We were invited by the Elders to play soccer with Presidente Chaparro, and we thought, "yeah sounds fun." Plus I had a goal before the mission to learn to play soccer and basically become a pro, and so far after 13 months in Argentina, Im still at the same level that I was before the mission. About the level of a 6 year old. 
And so....Soccer was interesting. One time the ball actually came to me, caught me off guard because I was busy watching a tractor. I tried to kick the ball, and missed COMPLETELY! Like I said, level of a 6 year old. But don't worry, I will get better.

Also on June 27, I woke up and told my compa, its my 1/2 birthday, and she says, "ummm, no Hna, your half bday is in July." ALL my life I thought my half bday was in June. So yeah, that was disappointing! jajaja

LOTS of miracles this week!!!❤
1) Nelida!!! Her open wound that she has had for months miraculously healed after the Priesthood blessing. Even the doctors are completely amazed. But she is still in the hospital doing more tests, but please keep her in your prayers. 

2) We were knocking doors and I tell my compa that we are going to say that we are looking for the Lopez family, just to start a convo and then contact them and invited them to listen to our message. So we knock at a house, they reject us. Then we keep walking and decide to knock at one more house. We ask for the Familia Lopez. And they say, "yup, that's us!" I was like "NO WAY!' Bueno. I know that Lopez is a super common last name here...but still! It's not a coincidence. Plus, this family is related to another family we are teaching. They are super awesome but didn't make it to church yesterday, so we will see.

3) The Elder that is the financial man of our mission hasn't paid our bills for lights, water, etc, since JANUARY. Miracle that they haven't turned off our power.

4) We had our farewell conference with Presidente Chaparo. Miracle, I actually didn't cry. It was a great conference and when Presidente and Hermana Chaparro closed with their testimonies, the Spirit was so strong. And then it hit me that they are actually leaving. Bittersweet. I'm going to miss them a lot.

5) We had splits and Hermana Mannewitz stayed in our area and as able to lead. #proudtrainermoment
I also realized how much I love Hna Mannewitz and my area. I was gone 24 hours but I was dying tp go back. But splits is always a good learning experience. I was with Hna Urena, she is from California and she is the best.

6) I know that God uses other people to answer our prayers. Yesterday in fast and testimony meeting, I had a small moment of feeling like the worst missionary...only 2 of our 10 investigators that we were expecting showed up to church. Then a member asked for a copy of a Book of Mormon to give to their nonmember friend, and I didn't have one. I completely forgot to put another one in my bag in the morning. So yeah, I was feeling like I was letting everyone down. Then a member gets up and she is a 1 year convert and she says that she was looking at my companion and I during the meeting and felt a strong impression to share her testimony. So she shared the sweetest testimony and then said, "Misioneras, thank you. You are giving up so much, and even on the good days and the bad days, the sun and the rain, you are serving the Lord. We love you and thank you for what you do for us." I know that this Hermana was guided by the Spirit to say these words. Words that touched my heart and answered my prayers. 
How amazing that we can be answers to other people's prayers. 

7) 3 Nephi 27:27
Studied that scripture a lot this week, an what it means to be "even as I am". To become like Him, we must also do the things He did. (3 Nephi 27:21) Often we are caught up in TO DO. Almost everyone has a TO DO liost. But I read a conference talk that stressed the importance of having a "TO BE" list. Who do we want to be?

8) Luz Maria, one of my converts will go to the temple for the first time this week ๐Ÿ™‚

9) Converts in 3 cerritos that I taught after their baptism recently were sealed as a family!!❤❤❤

YAY for AMERICA

My companion and I will celebrate the fourth by making hamburgers.. in the oven.. tomorrow!! 

Hope you all have a great week, and know that I love and pray for each one of you every day!!

GOD BLESS AMERICA AND ARGENTINA jajaja

Con Amor
Hermana Norman
Last conference with Presidente Chaparro

Going to miss them

Elder y Hermana Ward, new missionary couple


Got to go visit Nelida again...I love her! 
NELIDA!
Wouldn't you let us in?
Members! They are so good to us

Sunday, July 2, 2017

N'Sync

June 26, 2017

One of our eternal investigators set a date to get married and then she can get baptized! August 12th Clara will get married and then August 19 she will be baptized.

So even though I most likely will not be in Limache in August, and won't be at their wedding and baptism, I am so happy for them. ❤

We walked ALOT more this week...more than usual. Not a lot of people wanting to let us in, but still keeping a positive attitude.

Sometimes the smallest things can make big differences in my day. While we ate lunch with some members, their 2 year old son, Martin said the prayer to bless the food. He prayed for us, BY NAME!! I couldn't believe he remembered my name. But after hearing the sweet and simple prayer, I realized again how special it is to be a missionary. The members treat us so well. We are so blessed. It feels so good to walk into church or a member's home and have the kids yelling, "Hermana!!" or "Misionera!!" Being a missionary is amazing!

Everyone's getting sick with the flu, and this past week I sneezed so hard that I strained my neck. so that was cool.

My compa and I made brownies, and yeah, I was in heaven.


This was also Presidente Chaparro's last week as our mission president. I am so grateful for all that he has taught me this past year. He has been such a great leader and example.

This week I studied a lot about service. I love a quote that I found that says,
     "Often the answer to our prayer does not come while on our knees, but while we're on our feet serving the Lord and serving those around us."
I've been looking for small ways that I can do more little acts of service.
One day, we ate in our apartment because members gave us food in a tupperware. It was ALOT of food and we could not finish it all. So I suggested to my companion that we give the food to a very poor couple that lives near our apartment. One morning, we saw this woman searching through the garbage outside for food to eat. My heart ached to see how they are living. But after giving them food, they accepted happily, and we walked away feeling good. We had already tried to invite them to learn more about the church, but they politely declined. But who knows...maybe these small acts of service can soften their hearts.

     "Preach the gospel at all times and if necessary, use words"
This is so true. As we serve, and live the gospel, people will be naturally attracted to the church.

I hope that all of you this week can look for an opportunity to serve!

Life is so much better when we aren't busy thinking about ourselves, but when we are thinking of others. ❤

Also, happy happy birthday to my Grandma Norman this week. What an amazing woman she is. I miss her and her contagious laugh. Love you Grandma ❤❤❤

Con Amor,
Hermana Norman


My district

our district plaques

PIZZA!

YUMMM brownies! Dont mind the broken plate...jajaja
Presidente came and played soccer with us! What fun!


Oh Look! A tree that is the same shape as me...jajaja

BRAIDS