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Apr 6, 2015

boom, boom, boom, marriage, family, marriage, marriage, marriage aaaaaaand then some MORE marriage.

Bueeeeenas tardes (good afternoon), y'all!

Chillin' with my converts! The Amaguaña fambam, love them so much :) Hna. Salas was chilling with us in a trio last night since her comp, our dear Hermana Deveraux finished her mish yesterday, hence her appearance in the pic. :) 

Sorry my letters are usually just like a word vomit onto the keyboard and sometimes my sentences don't make any sense. I was reading some letters I've sent home and I was just sitting there like, ¨HOW do people even ever understand me??!¨ Or maybe y'all don´t, heh. :) ANNYWAAAAYS...
WOWOOWOWOOWOWOW: I AM SPEECHLESS FROM CONFERENCE. It blew me away. As I was sitting and listening to the MoTab sing before the beginning of the Saturday sesh, I was just filled with gratitude that we have a modern prophet, a LIVING prophet. So incredible, and it is honestly a privelege to sustain him. 

I feel WAAAY more grateful for the Restoration ever since I got out on my mission. I didn't really get why it was so important before, but now, more than ever, I understand that GOD LOVES US. And that He is continually reaching out through His servants, we are NEVER left without light or guidance in these latter days :) The Church is true, my friends.

Conference was just so edifying, I was in heaven. Every single talk was just tailor made for me. I have been trying to pick which one could be my favorite, but I can't. Main topics: adversity, Atonement, compassion, missionary work, sharing testimonies unapologetically yet with class, courage, covenants, family, Holy Ghost, home, Jesus Christ, marriage, motherhood, PLAN OF SALVATION, truth, unity. 

I loved Uchtdorf´s talk on GRACE. I think that that may be one of my favorite subjects, I really didn't understand it before, and I'm still learning to grasp the concept. But I really do stand all amazed that God's plan is just so perfect and that Christ is TRULY our Savior and Redeemer. 

As I have been reading the Book of Mormon (I'm trying to squeeze in reading it one more time) the Plan of Salvation has really jumped out at me, it actually has every time I've read the Book of Mormon out here on the mission. But this time in particular, I am GETTING TO KNOW Christ. Not about Him, but HIM

I LOVE THE CABASCANGO FAMILY! AHHHHHW they are my absolute fave. They are the miracle of my mission. If you watch the Robles fam story in the "Preach My Gospel -  The District 2" videos, their story is almost the exact same :) AHHH I love them. They came to conference and we set goals last night with them. They are stoked for the temple and fam history work, and just everything! Idk if I told y'all that Cristina has a calling now, she is the Relief Society teacher. It's so amazing to see everyone grow in the Gospel. :) 

I am understanding how much our Father in Heaven loves and cares and desires that EACH one of us gets back to His presence. I understand more fully that it is dependant on our actions, on our Free Agency, on our faith that leads us to a sincere repentance, obedience and saving ordinances. I love the Book of Mormon. I get it now! And I am sharing that with others, it causes my testifying, even in contacts, to be much stronger. 

ALL of Saturday was like boom, boom, boom, marriage, family, marriage, marriage, marriage aaaaaaand then some MORE marriage. Families truly are so central to our Father in Heaven's plan, it's blatantly obvious. I love that the Church is centered on this, coupled with our Savior's Atonement. 

And then Sunday was all about coming back and reaching out to those who are wandering. I am still trying to pick out which one is my fave and it's pretty much impossible, because each talk spoooookeeee to my heeeeart! 

Well, wow! We got the changes last night (THE LAST TIME I WILL EVER GET THEM, odd) aaaaannnnnnnd, druummmrooollllllll, they closed our sector of Otavalo 1! So cray. So basically, Hermana (Sister) Salas and her "kid" (she's gonna train. Fresh outta her first twelve weeks! Like me! ha!) are gunna take over and there will just be one compañerismo in the ward. It was such a suprise. I totally trust it's the Lord's will though! I know that Hermana Salas and her hijita (little "daughter" trainee) will take very good care of our converts and less actives and investigators. 

My hija ("daughter" or trainee) numba 3! Hermana Silva from Cochabamba Bolivia.

Y'all, I am SO grateful for this work! I'm tearing up as I type because my heart is just overflowing with LOVE for all the people that I am leaving behind in Otavalo. My new comp is Hermana Silva, age 21, from Bolivia... she's been here from 6 weeks, and I'm gonnna finish up her last 6 weeks of the 12 week training. I am gonna be her "stepmother" -- muahahah. She is SO sweet! I love her enthusiasm for the work already. 

Super excited to work really hard in Cotama as well (which is literally right next door, like 10 mins away, yet it's a different stake. They don't call it Utah-valo for nothin'), so excited to just hit it hard and work my tail off. 

I am SOSOOSOSOS GRATEFUL to finish in Otavalo! I will have a YEAR here in Otavalo. Honestly my favorite place ever. There is such a special spirit here. I know that the promises in the Book of Mormon really do come to life here. 

This was right before conference on Saturday morning after she passed her baptismal interview :) 

Something I have noticed in myself in the past 6 months or so, is that I don't teach apologetically anymore, I used to be like, "Wellllll, if you reeeaally quizás (maybe) waaaaant the blessings, then I guueeesss you can keep the Sabbath day holy (or any other commandment)." But now, I think as a result of my OWN conversion building, and great trainings from our leaders, and practice, and genuine love and concern and care for my brothers and sisters I teach, and a greater understanding of my calling as a missionary, I am able to teach directly, with LOVE, and in a way that I can use the power and authority I have. IT'S SO INCREDIBLE. It makes all the difference. Yay progress, yay.

I woke up on Easter morning and was very pensative. I was pondering on my gratitude and my testimony of Christ. I wrote it all down in my journal, and I was just filled up with the sweetest peace and overwhelming feeling of love. I know that my Redeemer lives. I know that Christ knows us and loves us. He is risen. 


Apply conference! That's the most important part! Set three goals to achieve before October 2015! (Mine is to get married. HAHAHH TOTALLLYYY JUST KIDDING. K bai)

Con muchísimo amor (with a whole lot of love), 
Hermana (Sister) Bowman 

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