Wednesday, January 28, 2015


This week has gone by so fast! But it has been so good! 

A couple days ago I was studying the Refiner's fire because it is the best. 

"I wish to speak... to those who feel they have had more trials, sorrows, pricks, and thorns than they can bear and in their adversity are almost drowned in the waters of bitterness"

"Into every life there come the painful, despairing days of adversity and buffeting. There seems to be a full measure of anguish, sorrow, and often heartbreak for everyone, including those who earnestly seek to do right and be faithful. The thorns that prick us, that stick in the flesh, that hurt, often change lives which seem robbed of significance and hope. This change often comes about through a refining process which often seems cruel and hard. In this way, the soul can become like soft clay in the hands of the Master in building lives of faith, usefulness, beauty, and strength. For some, the refiner's fire causes a loss of belief and faith in God, but those with eternal perspective understand that such refining is part of the perfection process."

Is that not just one of the best things you have ever heard? I love it! We need to allow our souls to become soft like clay in the Master's hands. The more willing we are to let that happen, the easier it will be. Hno Adlish, in response to a question, wrote an equation on the board for change. I'll send the picture later. It is the coolest. 

This week Elder Garcia and Sister Goodman came in! 

Thank you for the package and the letters! You are all the best! 

Last night we had another lesson with Maria*. The missionaries who were in with her before went 10 minutes over, and already our lessons with her are scheduled for only 25 minutes. We went in and we talked a little bit and asked if she was able to go to Church on Sunday, as we challenged her on Thursday. She said not this week because she went out of town with her family. They went to Vegas to get a passport for their daughter, and Maria told us how she doesn't like Las Vegas because of all the bad influences and you can really just feel negativity. She started talking about how her daughter wanted a drink, but the only drinks had alcohol. Her daughter was 21, so Maria didn't tell her if she could or couldn't, but she said her daughter decided a long time ago she would never have alcohol. Which was perfect, because our lesson was on la Palabra de Sabiduría. Instead of taking 15 minutes, we took 50! So that changed a couple of our plans for the rest of the night, but it was so good! The spirit was strong!

In our lesson with Julio*, we got his attention. We were teaching about covenants so he could understand that as members of the church, we make promises and commitments with God, and we believe in keeping them, as opposed to just being a member. I told a story about my life, and how when I was true to the commitments I made, I was blessed. My initial thought was "I did it!" but then later realized I was definitely strengthened in my time of need. Without Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, I would not have been able to make it. Then Hna Cobb explained why we make promises to God, and that we call them covenants. He seemed really interested. The teacher investigators always exaggerate boredom or lack of interest when we teach so we can pick up on it, but this lesson was super different. We ran out of time though as we were about to apply the story of the Strippling Warrios to him and his life, but he asked if we could continue our next lesson, which is tonight. So we are pretty excited to see how that goes.

One thing I just remembered from our first day here was we taught "investigators" in group form. They separated all the new missionaries into 3 groups and we taught some people. The worker in charge of our group had the best accent. It took me a while to figure out what it reminded me of, but I finally put my finger on it. It sounds like Shawn Spencer when he talks in his Swedish accent. Needless to say, it was great!

On Monday we had an ayuna [fasting] de Ingles. It was super fun. We got into it and did so well! Even planning our lessons was in Spanish, which is harder than it sounds. It went pretty perfectly until class after lunch, where we had to do a lot of things in English, and then for the rest of the night it was a struggle to remember. 

Congratulations to all those who got their mission calls! I'm so excited!

I don't know what to share! So much has happened, but it is also just the same every week. 

OH MY GOODNESS. Family, you wont believe me, but two nights ago I suffered through growing pains! I got no sleep. Why am I still growing? 

I have perfected my head stands. 

I played the piano for the first time on Saturday! And then I played for Sacrament Meeting on Sunday. It was the best.

Before every week for Sacrament meeting, we have to write a 3-5 minute talk in Spanish. This week was super busy, so I didn't have much time at all to write my talk. But I'll write it here for all of you so you know we do mission related things. The topic was faith in Christ. Don't mind the grammar at all because I wrote it in as much time as it would take to read. 

La fe en Jesucristo nos ayuda llegar a ser las personas mejor. Mediante la fe en Cristo, podemos ser limpio para eternidad. Sin fe en Cristo no podemos volver y vivir con Dios otra vez. 

Uno de mis escrituras preferado es Mateo 14,31. Pedro fue en un barco y veó Cristo sobre el agua. Pedro quiere caminar sobre el agua y Cristo dicho, si tiene la fe, usted puede caminar sobre el agua. Pedro tienó fey empreza caminar, pero Pedro veó el océano tempestuoso y tiene miedo. 

Versiculo 14 dice ...

Me gusta much que dice ¨y al momento Jesús, extendiendo la mano¨. Jesucristo no empreso. Él fue allí. Tambien, me gusta mucho que Jesús dice ¨Por qué dudaste¨. Si nosotros conocemos a Cristo, nosotros no tenemos que tener los préocupaciones. Si tenemos la fe en Cristo, todos seran bueno. 


Ya. We have to write them down. 

I'm really excited for all the time I have over the next 17 months and 1 week to completely change. I hope none of you know me by the time I get home. I love being able to devote myself to Christ and his gospel all day. I had an interview with one of my teachers yesterday, and he was just checking how things were going, one on one. I realized that even though nothing huge has changed, there has been change on the inside and change on my heart, and over time it will completely change me. I cannot wait.

Anyway, love you all. The gospel is true. 

Oh. One more cool thing. In Spanish, to know is the verb saber. Pero, to know personally is the verb conocer. In the scriptures it uses conocer when talking about knowing Christ. We need to gain testimony and then conversion in Christ. 

Con amor, paz, y felicidad,

Hermana Lewis

Studying for days.


Equation for change. En español.

Last week at the temple.

Partial district.

We have, no lie, eaten a million of these giant chocolate chip cookies. Also, I have gained weight...

"All by myself"

This man in charge of Cafeteria Administration gave Hna Cobb and me some fresh picked oranges because he saw me getting some. IT WAS SO GOOD! 

Hna Bagley thought you would want a picture of me, Mamacita.

Elder Passey likes to pose for the camera.

Our Class Schedule

Elder Arce steals my camera almost daily.

The Elders promised they wouldn't steal my camera.

After our lesson with Maria last night.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Mi Familia (snail mail)

January 25, 2015

Hola mi familia!  I have been meaning to write you for so long!  Technically I'm only supposed to write on P days, but we walked back to our room after sacrament meeting, and mi companera fell asleep, and I don't have anthing to study, so in order to use my time wisely, I thought I should write instead of sleep.  Como estan?  I've had so much fun here in the MTC!  I've seen friends all over the place and I'm making so many more!  Thanks for all the letters and for the package!  even though I don't really have time to respond, I love reading them and rereading them.

Some cool things that have happened are
1.  [this one is also sad, though, but i love it] Ever since night 2 in el CCM, I either wake up multiple times during the night and can't sleep and immediately start praying en espanol or I talk en espanol en mi duerme.

2.  In one of our past lessons w/Maria*, she said my accent was perfect.  This last lesson, she told me not to try so hard to say things, but I was just having an off day that day.  But I'm pretty happy!

Every Sunday night we get to watch a movie/video.  Last week, we watched Character of Christ by Bednar from 2003, I think.  Dad, you wrote to me about something & I can't quite remember what, but you would love that talk.  I think we are going to watch it again tonight.

You guys all sound so busy!  Enjoy what you do while you do it!

Today I taught a district lesson w/Hna Cobb.  It was on faith in Christ.  Those meetings are in English, and our lesson/discussion went well.  Each week, before sacrament meeting we each have to prepare a talk based on a certain topic.  This week's topic was faith in Christ...

There is so much to tell you, I don't even know where to begin.  You can send packages to missionaries w/giant cookies in them.  One of the Hnas in my room has an uncle who keeps sending them.  They are barely smaller than my hand.  And they are so good! 2 different kinds of chocolate, oats, whole wheat flour, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon...I have had a lot.

The words & tenses we can no longer use (main ideas, not everything) so far are can, should, will, have to, going to/gonna, gerunds, want, like, and read.  And tomorrow we are doing an ayuna de ingles.  I'm so excite!  We can't use any English all day.  One thing I've noticed since I've been here is how blessed I am for the faith I have exercised.  Thursday (Jan 08), we learned how to pray and bare our testimonies en espanol.   Our teacher told us from then on, all our prayers should be in Spanish.  Since then, I have said every prayer (except 1, oops) in Spanish and I know for sure that is a huge reason why I am having such success with Spanish.  I see people around me struggling, and I also hear them praying in English because they don't want to try, it kills me.  I wish I could just make them.  I think I can almost speak as much Spanish as I could French although right now my French is suffering.  Sometimes I speak it to Elder Caine, and then after TRC on Friday, I ran into some French speaking missionaries, my friend included, and got to talk for a quick couple minutes.  Definitely going through learning another language has made learning Spanish almost too easy.  Just kidding.  Not too easy, but I already get rules and tenses, and forms and it all just makes sense!

Oh!  Someone tell Mdm Call that Elder Caine remembers her from her mission, please!

I'm so glad I'm on a mission, and I'm so glad I know that it's what I'm supposed to be doing right now.

We have a lesson tomorrow with one of our investigators, Julio*.  He is a tricky one because he has faith, but doesn't like organized church b/c he feels like members of any church are quick to say they are a member but don't live by it.  It's an interesting point.  We're going to teach about covenants


Our lesson went well with him!

Today is P-day!  I just almost finished writing you, but because I sent so many emails, it kickec me out for an hour.

I hope you all are doing well!


In an interview thing w/one of my teachers yesterday he said he has seen me apply what I'm learning, that my Spanish is fantastic, I'm an example of a hard worker, I have a good relationship w/my companion, Hna Cobb and I show diligence and exact obedience, but that we can still be happy because of that.  He said he was proud of my effort and also that he knows God is proud of my efforts.  I twas nice to hear that (from someone besides family)

That is all for now I guess.  I'm running out of energy to write.

Hermana Abuela

Thursday, January 22, 2015


This week has been so good! We are at a weird point because ever since we got here, we have been talking about how once we get to one month left in the MTC, it's going to be crazy. We were talking about it all up until Tuesday, until we realized that one month mark is today! We only have one month left in the MTC. 

I have been making a list of things I need to write about, but I always forget to write on that list, so I hope something I say does justice to what happens here.

One of our teachers, Hermano Beeston, is such a good teacher. He is a Spanish teacher. As are all of our teachers. When we understand and talk well in Spanish, he calls us Mexicans, Nicaraguans, etc. It cracks me up every time. Every time.

Hermana Cobb y yo have been making new friends all over the place. We talk to everyone and it is so fun! For a while we would go sit by someone new in the cafeteria, and then they would finish before us because we are so slow, and then we would be sitting alone. People from our zone, who all happen to sit together somewhere else, started asking us why we were sitting alone. we told them we only sit by people who think we are funny--no one, and then we would die laughing. RIP us. Then they would realize we were joking, but man. 

There are a lot of desks in our classroom, and then we have all our language books and all the other things we need, so there is not much space. Then the elders always shift, and so Hermana Cobb and I are left with no space. Every time I get into my desk, everything drops onto the floor. It has gotten to a point where I should really be able to handle myself, but I haven't yet. It's not like I am not organized, but without fail. Every. Single. Time. Elder Arce on day said "Thank you, Hermana Lewis, now class can start" as my scriptures, pens, Spanish books, planner, and dictionary fell all over the floor. It's not just me any more, though. Every time someone drops something on the floor everyone pauses and says "the curse" and then wiggles their fingers. Love my district. 

Elder Caine is from Mauritius. I asked him if he knew my Madame Call from when she went on her mission there about 8 years ago and he did! Thought I would share.

Que hace un paz? Nada

That was a joke. 

Another thing that was funny was yesterday in class, Hno Adlish was trying to tell us that something was soft. He was speaking in Spanish, but then he had to switch to English. When he got to the word soft, it came out as suaft. As in a mix of suave and soft. 

In Spanish, the word casar is to get married, and cazar is to hunt. When you say it, it's the same. So at BYU, you are doing both. Jajaja let it sink in.

In all of our lessons, we have this list of feelings that always make their way in. Por ejemplo: paz, felicidad, gozo, caridad, etc. It has kind of become a huge chisto for us, and we throw those words around in conversations. We were planning our first lesson with our new investigator, Julio*, and we were figuring out what would be best to teach. 

Me: First thing is...
Hermana Cobb: First things first I'm the realest (from the song)
Me: (thinking she said "first things first on our list, laughing super hard) paz, y felicidad...
Hermana Cobb: I don't think you heard me right!

When we finally were able to collect ourselves we explained what we meant. It was so funny though. 

Because Hermana Cobb and I love to make new friends, we sit by different people all the time. One group of missionaries who we have become pretty good friends with are going to the two missions in Germany. One is from Canada, so I was testing out all my knowledge. I asked him if he knew what a headley was and he said it's me. His name happens to be Elder Headley. But he said no and I told him it's a band. Then he told me it really is a band. Like the band Headley. Not another word for band. I died laughing. So you can now be enlightened. 

Last night we had a devotional with M Russell Ballard. It was really good. He talked about missionary service and about apostasy. I have so many great notes, but no time. You'll get the gist of it later.

Hermano Adlish gave us so many great lessons. Same with Hermano Mecham. And Hermano Beeston. They are all just so good. And they all have such good testimonies. 

This week we taught our new investigators, and then we also taught Mara*'s third and fourth lessons and they went so well, with Maria at least...

I haven't played the piano in forever and I have to play in Spanish for sacrament meeting on Sunday. It'll be a struggle.

Last night it was my turn to say the prayer for dinner. I leaned towards Hermana Cobb to say my prayer, and once I finished, I sat back and I just stared at her. She hadn't said amen or anything and was still sitting there in silence. 30 seconds later, she opened her eyes and all the people we were sitting with were just laughing. I thought she just wasn't listening. This morning, though, I found out that she fell asleep during the prayer. 

Our district went through something a little hard this week, but Hermano Adlish gave us a lesson that focused on what we might need to help us get through it, and it helped so much. 

This week's email is pretty scattered, too. Whenever I try to get on the computer, it blacks out and logs me off, on multiple computers, so sorry. Also, we have so many pictures and not enough time to send them all, so I will do what I can. 

We have outlived all the people we came to the MTC with if they weren't learning a language. We're old.

I guess I will bare my testimony so you know that I am learning and growing. Sorry for such a lame email. 

Yo sé que esta iglesia es verdad. Yo sé que Dios ama todos sus hijos. Yo sé que mediante la Expiación de Jesucristo, podemos volver y vivir con Dios. Yo sé que José Smith fue un profeta de Dios. El Libro de Mormón es la palabra de Dios y que si leemos este libre, nuestras preguntas van contestar. Estoy muchos agradecido por la Expiación y por Jesucristo, que puedo ser limpio y llegar a ser, y por el amor de nuestro Padre Celestial. Yo sé que el don de lenguas es verdad y estoy agradecido por este, tambien. Dios contesta nuestros oraciones. Dios nos ama. En el nombre de Jesucristo, amen.

 Buenos suerte a todos. 

Yo les quiere muchos! 

Con amor, paz, y felicidad, 
Hermana Lewis

Several photos she tried to send did not come through.  :(

Day one! First picture con mi compañera!

Day 2

Some of los Elderes. Elder Sorensen, Elder Nelson, Elder Caine, Elder Passey, y Elder Kaze.

Mail!  Gracias!

Casually laughing

Los otros dos Elderes. Elder Erasmus y Elder Arce. 

After a lesson on day 2

I study hard.

Despues de nuestro primero leccion con Sam*. It was bad.

Sister Wunderli! Love her to death!

Despues de nuestro segundo leccion con Sam*! It was so much better!

After our third lesson with Sam*! It was sooo good, if I do say so myself. I was so excited. 

Practicing Español!

Last week on P day in the laundry room!

After our fourth and final lesson with Sam*.

Hermana Ramos y yo. I had people call me Abuela Lewis that day.

Living the food life.

We posed.

We decided I looked like a gnome and she looked like a fairy. Say hola to Stumpy and Heartflutter!

Part of our zone. Elder Larson, Elder Anderson, Elder Casey, yo, y Hermana Cobb.

Conquered the folding chair and touched the fire alarm. Then got caught by the Branch President´s wife.