Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Can we see a wedding?


Wow we have a beautiful investigator named Mariana. I don't recall if I told you about her. But she has now come to church, two Sunday's in a row with her four daughters, and the second time she brought her FRIEND!!! We are so excited!! 

Yesterday we passed by her house and she was READING THE BOOK OF MORMON!!!!!!!!!! I about died and we quickly got in to give her friend who was there a book of mormon as well. We have an appointment with her on Tuesday. Her husband sales strawberries here from Guatemala. We told her the other day that she has to be married to be able to be baptized. So she went to Guatemala with her husband and told her mother-in-law that she wants to get married to her son. She got permission! 

The only problem is money....

But I talked to President George during an interview we had this past week and he said he could help us get her married, as long as she is keeping her commitments. He told me to send him a text when it looks like things get moving... He also divulged the transfers to me and so I AM STAYING IN XOCHIMILCO WITH HERMANA ROBLES!!!!!!!!! Woooooh!! We are both so excited to see the progress of Mariana. At the end of the interview President told me he loved me. He also told me that I am always so positive and that I remind him of a story... that there was a boy who was always so positive that his parents filled his room with horse poop for his birthday to see what would happen. When he saw it all he said, "WOW! There must be a horse in here somewhere!" 

We also taught Lupita for the first time, the reference from Jaime. She loves to come to church and this past Sunday was her 3rd time. She ACCEPTED BAPTISM!! Now we are getting her ready to get baptized! 

This week we found a less active woman named Teresa. She is AMAZING. She had 14 children and now she is raising 4 more daughters for her son and daughter in law who don't want them. She is 76 years old. I asked her what the secret was to raising children and she said, "pacience, love, and God will do the rest!" I was thinking a lot about that this week and I think it's true. We passed by her house to bring her to church but her daughters hadn't eaten yet. But she came anyway and when we arrived she was so happy. She immediately started to read the bible as we entered in (really late because of the 4 girls who got tired walking) and said it was her first time in church for a long time. The bishop didn't know who she was, and so we were happy that he was able to meet her. She has some heart problems and can barely walk but is the sweetest lady. I was so touched to see her sitting in sacrament meeting with those four young girls and I cried. What a work she has done, and what a work all mothers have done. I love you mom.

I love you family and I miss you. I work hard to make you guys proud, but most of all the Lord. 


Hermana Cook 

P.S: Enjoy the rain :) 

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

You think it rained?

Hola familia!! 

You think it rained there?? OH well do I have pictures to send to YOU!! ha ha. It rained and STORMED here SO hard that trees fell, the lights went out, there were rivers in the street, and we were WADING through the storm up to our knees!!! I have never felt the lightning so strong before that the hairs on your neck raise and you FEEL the electricty... It was like that blue guy from spiderman 2....

Well we have found many great investigators but none of them are married... We found an investigator named Mariana about a week ago, who has 4 girls and 1 on the way. She got together with her husband at 12 years old and had her first baby when she was 13. She now is 21. Well, she came to church!!! We were ECSTATIC!! We couldn't belive it. She accepted baptism. And then came the moment when we had to tell her she can't be baptized until she is married.

She explained to us about her husband's work. He vends strawberries from Guatemala and they only have sufficient to pay the rent and the the light and the food. They don't have more. We told her we would search for someone who could help her get married for cheap because she says she would like to get married to her "husband." The other night we taught her the restoration in her house but it was super dark because there was no light in all of the colonia. Her poor girls were all crying in fear. Her oldest daughter wants to be baptized as well, she is 8. 

We have another investigator named Grace who is in the same situation although she says she doesn't want to get married. 

But we keep wading through the rivers and searching people who are married and who are ready for the gospel. 

I love you family.

Hermana Cook

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Is this really happening?

Hola Familia!! 

I just LOVED talking with you guys!! It gave me so much strength to push forward and love with all that I have. 

Apparently, the Spanish people love Japanese candy! She has made a lot of contacts by sharing!

Mom asked me in her letter what I meant when I was talking about the doctor here in Tapachula. He was supposed to be released as mission doctor but they assigned him ANOTHER YEAR. So, President and Sister George told me that in order to keep him happy, I have to teach his daughter violin lessons. ha ha. 

One of the converts here, Jaime, went to the temple with the ward and was able to do baptisms. He has really made a complete transition from his former life. He used to have piercings all over, he drank, he smoke, and he is only 17. But he now has nothing to do with that and to see him in the temple, smiling was really a miracle. We have been working with him a lot this transfer because he just barely got baptized, about 2 months ago. 

Another strong sister named Juanita entered the temple for the first time as well. She has been a member since she got married. She got married to her husband and then afterwards they were baptized. But then, overnight, he left her. So she left the church and fought all her life to raise her two children. But we have also been working with her this transfer and she entered the temple to do baptisms for the first time as well. It was amazing. 

We were teaching an older man and his wife. He was a reference of a member here. The poor old man cannot understand baptism or the priesthood. He has been listening to the missionaries since 1972 and he was about to get baptized several years ago when he suddenly said, "I will be catholic forever." And so we returned to teach him the restoration  (who knows how many times he has heard it) and he told us that if he would be baptized again, it would be in the catholic church.... ahhhhhhhhhh. I just tried to love the poor old man but mostly I just felt really sad that he wouldn't accept it. 

The other day I was talking to a lady in the street and I invited her to church. This was her response, "why would I tell you yes if the next day I might not go." I was thinking about her response that is very similar to many of the responses I hear in Mexico. I think that sometimes we have a fear of doing something good because afterwards we might fall or mess up. But for that SPECIFIC reason, Jesus Christ came to this earth. He came so that when we do fall, we can get back up again. I know the atonement works not only to heal us, but to ENABLE us to do much more than we ever thought possible. I have got to help these people realize what the atonement really can do in their every day lives, because they don't understand. 

Well, I love you so much family. GODSPEED. Listen to mom and pull out your scriptures, your marking pens, and get STUDYING. You'd better have a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and the Bible before you think to step out the door and preach it. 

I love you family

Hermana Cook 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

The little boy named Jose


Gracee congrats in your play!! Talmage congrats for scoring a good one in basketball with the singles ward!! Gabby congrats in your dance competition and Africa!! Dad congrats with your new calling!! Momma congrats for holding this ALL together and Africa and the microscope!!

Last Monday we taught a little boy named Jose. The missionaries have taught him all the lessons and he is 8 years old. He knows a lot about the gospel. He can't be baptized because his parents will not give him permision. We taught him the plan of salvation and that he need to be baptized to be able to go to the celestial kingdom. And he told us he wanted to be baptized... Well we were in the middle of the lesson when his mom walked through the gate really drunk with alcohol under her shirt and she went into the house. His dad is also an alcoholic. We all just fell silent and sadness entered in like a thickness. Neither my companion nor I said anything because we knew we would just start bawling if we tried to talk. 

Somehow we got out our hymn books and started to sing Nearer my God to Thee. I was trying to remain happy but I just couldn't control myself and started to cry in the middle of the song along with my companion. We felt so much sadness for this little boy. Who is going to say family prayers with him? Who is going to teach him the things of God? The missionaries can try but it is not the same as a mother and a father in the home. Who is going to make sure that he gets to school and that he reads his scriptures? THat he gets to eat? Ay no. sigh. 

I would like to talk to his parents and ask for their permission, because we haven't tried that yet. I think in the past other missionaries have when there were Elders here. I will keep you updated on him. 

We went to teach Blanca again and we ended up teaching her whole family. 3 of them say that they are atheists. So I just testified to them that all things testify that there is a God. The other one was a pastor or something because he just wanted to Bible bash. And Blanca's husband was just beginning to drink. So we tried with our might and taught the restoration but in the end the pastor told us to leave because he had other things to do (like drink) .... ha we tried. 

We have a temple trip with the ward on Friday to Tuxtla. Jaime the recent convert is coming! It will be his first time entering the temple. He wants to do the work for his parents who have both passed away. Jaime is really trying to do his best in the gospel. He lives his grandma who is always stoking the fridge up with alcohol. Jaime drank before but has completely stopped and the members have really taken him in- including a little crush he has on a girl in the ward. THat surely helps to get him to stay strong in the gospel. 

Octavio never did get to enter the temple (but that was when I left Villaflores) He wanted to but he didn't go in for his recommendation. But Hermana Buendia and her companion (who is also named Hermana Cook) are working wiht him. I don't know where she is from, but she is in my place in Villaflores, and her name is Hermana Cook! Hermana Buendia is training her right now. 

The first generation of Hermana's from the U.S. went home the 13th of April, 2015. 

And for all of you who are wondering, my companion from Guatemala also believes that the Olmecs were the Jaredites... She is from the tribe of Manasses. 

On mom's birthday there was a storm here like I have NEVER seen before. The rain was SO strong and the trees rocking to and fro, and the lightning lit up the WHOLE sky as if it were day time. IT WAS SO OOO COOL!! But us missionaries were the only ones in the street! That's what happens when the rains come, almost every day now. 

I love you family,


Hermana Cook