Muy buenas tardessssss, familia! (Very good afternoon family!) :)
¿Qué tal? ¿Qué hubo? ¿Qué más? ¿Qué han hecho? (How's it going?)
It was closed so these are the best pics we got.... Shoulda known better, Temples are always closed on Mondays.
Well, this week was interesting! ROLLER COASTER, WOO.
We did yoga...
but I fell.
THIS WEEK STALIN AND FERNANDA GOT BAPTIZED!!!! So exciting. They were me and Hermana Stephensen's investigators in El Edén and ALMOST got baptized but then they moved. But we passed the referral and they got BAAAPPPTIZEDDDD!!! It´s just the biggest joy in my soul. I can´t even explain it :)
MY TRAINEE ("DAUGHTER") HERMANA (SISTER)ROJITAS!!!!
1 of the 6 people that wanted to take pics with the GRINGAS!!!!!! I feel like a celebrity here sometimes, y'all. Hahaha.
So anyways, me and another sister, Hermana Irepan (from Mexico) were chillin´ in the bus station waiting for other missionaries to arrive to do the switcheroo. Well, we got bored and went over to the little tents that had stuff for sale. One of the ladies selling her merchandise was from Otavalo (you can tell, because they always wear the traditional wear, anahco and stuff) and I asked what part she was from...
¨No ha de saber, mija... De Quinchuquí soy yo.¨ (You probs don´t know where this is, but Quinchuquí)
¨WHAAAAAAAATT! I served there! Have you ever seen the missionaries?¨
¨Yes, de hecho, there were two jovencitas who helped me one night when it was pouring rain and my gutter was clogged. They grabbed shovels and helped declog it.¨
I was thinking, aw, what nice missionaries... WAIT that was mee!!!! and then she recognized me and then I recognized her and then it was cute. It´s insane how things just go full circle. We invited her to church (because I remembered where the chapel is there) and gave her a folleto (pamphlet) and stuff. Cool beans.
MY OTAVALIAN MIRACLE LADY!
Good thing we brought our temple reccommends! We can go to the temple :P
We went to TEMPLO DEL SOL. It was grand. Although it was closed and we could only take pics through the gate, hahaha. I think that´s where they used to sacrifice things. There´s a throne and an arena and everything. Everyone here used to worship the sun, inti, in Kichwa. It's pretty interesting. I like the culture here.
Then we went to a crater, volcano thing, called Pululahua. It was fun. I love touristy things. Then we went to Mitad del Mundo again, and we had our friend the guard so he let us and the rest of the district in for free and escorted us up to the top of the monutment and whatnot. It was really cool! We went to 3 cultural sites in like 4 hours. Record timing. Dad would be proud of me hahaha. I remember family vacations. Good times.
Templo del Sol.
trying to break in...
...but then we remembered we´re missionaries and can't do hoodrat stuff and got sad.
This is Pululauhua. It's a volcano crater thing. Which was really cool and peaceful.
We went and ate lunch at our ex-less actives (active now) house. I LOVE THE PEOPLE HERE. I love them, I love them, I love them. I never wanna leave. But changes (aka transfers) are coming in two weeks. I usually only stay like two transfers (12 weeks) in each sector, El Edén being the exception, where I stayed for 3 transfers... We shall see. AAAAnd now, here we are writing all y'all.
ANDRESSSS, our gator of the invest (investigator - get it?) He is doing so well. He´s so golden. He´s 16 and we found him the firstof the transfer, like 4 weeks ago. He is getting baptized . We gave him a tour of the Chapel because the thing that has been holding him back is because he hasn´t been able to receive his answer. We invited him to pray by himself in the chapel on his knees. He said he felt an indescribable peace and said that everything went silent, even his own thoughts.
Later,, we invited him to just boom, open up the Book of Mormon during Sacrament meeting and read the 1st verse he saw. Alma 32:16, ¨Therefore, blessed are they who humble themselves without being compelled to be humble; or rather, in other words, blessed is he that believeth in the word of God, and is baptized without stubbornness of heart, yea, without being brought to know the word, or even compelled to know, before they will believe.¨ and he said, THIS IS MY ANSWER!!!!!!!! It was such a cool moment. AH I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. I feel so priveleged to be an instrument in the conversion of those around us, and see the Gospel work in their lives.
I cried a lot, not gonna lie. Missionaries cry too! (especially the sisters... aaaand especially me) I was all strong last week and stuff but then was pretty sad. Inevitable. But I know I can see my Dad again, so it´s all good :)
Ate empanadas Chilenas (Chilean empanadas) Jordan, we are gonna hafta eat those on the daily. They´re way good. My companion says to look for Vaquedano, because that´s where her bro lives. And we wanna know what ward you´re serving in so that her fam can take you and your comp food. :) Heh! Oh and it was pretty cool because I was teaching an investigator that Elder Bowman had been teaching. SMALL WORLD, Y´ALL.
This time really is short, I didn´t really understand or believe it when the people would say that at the beggining of my mission! But through lots of reflection junto con mi compañera (together with my comp) we have realized all of the growth that has taken place, especially in the deepening of our testimonies and conversion. This is so cool.
The District -- woo woo -- MISIÓN ECUADOR QUITO NORTE, EL CENTRO DEL MUNDO, CENTRADOS EN CRISTOOOOOOOOOO (North Quito Ecuador Mission, the center of the World, Centered in Christ)
OH MY GOODNESS THERE ARE CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS UP. I cannnnott believe it. It feels like August. And y'all are writing me telling me there is SNOW?¿!?? No, it´s still August in my mind. But I´m so excited for Christmas. It´s the most wonderful tiiiime of the year, especially as a missionary. It´ll be my second and last Christmas in Ecuador, sniff sniff.
I love all y'all. I invite you guys to look over y'all's notes from General Conference and make sure you're applying all the stuff you learned and putting into practice the personal revelation y'all received. It's the most important step! :)
HAVE A WONDERFUL WEEK!!!!!
Remember who you are, and make good choices!
Con muchísimo amor (with a lot of love),
Hermana (Sister) Lauren BowmanPS CONGRATS ON THE MARRIAGE, BO AND ALICIAAAAAA! So stoked for y'all, wish I could be there this weekend. Felicidades por cumplir con el mandamiento del matrimonio eterno ;) (Congratulations on complying with the commandment of eternal marriage) jeje (haha) Mosíah beeendiciones (blessings) cuenta y verás