Monday, November 24, 2014

November 24, 2014

Hola Familia!
This week was a crazy one and I have so much to tell you! We had our big zone conference this week, I have some great news... David Archuletta is coming to Spain!!! We have a Christmas fireside the 21st and I could not be more excited. We also learned that we are getting ipads, but we don´t know when haha! We all got super excited for no reason, but that´s okay! One day it will be our turn :)  The Zone Conference was so awesome.  It was so fun to see all the missionaries, including Hermana Toone and Santiago! I also learned so much from the Jacksons.  My favorite line of the day was, I didn´t come here to lay up, I came here to go for it. Isn´t that the truth! It gave me the motivation I needed to do my very best.  Plus I had "ya neva lay up" stuck in my head the rest of the day ;)

We got to go to the temple this week too and that was such a great experience for me.  I understood lots more than I did in the CCM! Plus I had a really great experience there too.  My companion saw some of her friends from Italy and we went to go talk to them.  It turns out one of the girls is in Steph´s ward in Rome! I may or may not have freaked out a little bit :) It was so great to talk to her, she says Steph is an amazing missionary!
I also have a funny and slightly inappropriate story for this week, please don´t judge me.  We were at an investigators house and they have a cute little 9 year old.  I like talking to her the most because she doesn´t judge my spanish, but anyway! She came up to me this week ad said, "Hermana Marsh, ¿Que significa (insert swearword here)?" AHHH!!!! I just froze I didn´t know what to do! Meanwhile my companion is laughing her head off haha! It really was the best and worst moment all at the same time!

I want to tell you about one girl we found this week.  Here name is Renee and she is the cutest.  She is 19 years old and we found her while we were contacting.  When we went to go visit her, we noticed her aunt was interested too which is the best thing for a missionary.  Plus she has the cutest daughter on the planet! Anyway, we started teaching them and they have so many great questions about the gospel and I can´t wait to see where things go with them.
I want to take a minute to tell you all how thankful I am for each of you, since it´s thanksgiving and all :) I have always been obsessed with my family you all know that, but being on the mission has never made me appreciate you more.  I am so thankful for all of the love and support I receive each week, you really are amazing! I am so thankful for this gospel in my life and the happiness that it brings me.  I am thankful for the opportunity to serve a mission and help the people of Spain know that they have a Heavenly Father that loves them.  The gospel is true and I love it with all my heart! I love you guys and hope you have the best Thanksgiving whether it´s in Japan, Italy, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma, or Arizona. Un Beso Grande!!
hermana marsh :)

Monday, November 17, 2014

November 17, 2014

Hola mi familia! 

I want to start out this week with a spiritual thought from a talk I read this week.  The talk is called His grace is sufficient by Brad Wilcox and it is such a great one.  One part I want to share is the analogy he gives with a mom paying for her child´s piano lessons.  When she pays the piano teacher, she doesn´t want the money back, she wants her child to have the skills of learning how to play the piano.  It is the exact same with Christ.  He has already paid the price for our sins, and he doesn´t want us to feel that pain as well, he wants us to apply this gift in our lives.  I never saw it that way before! He also shares that when a child makes a mistake on the piano, we never tell them to quit, but to try again.  When we make mistakes, we need to keep practicing :) That is what this life is all about! I am so grateful for a Savior that would pay the price for me, and for the opportunity I have to share it. 

This week was a great one! We were about to have lots of lessons and I want to tell you about a few.  The first one is Maria.  She is absolutely incredible! She has such a strong testimony and is progressing so well.  Last week we asked her if she would like to be baptized and she said yes! We have a date for next week, but she is having a hard time with smoking.  Please pray for her that she will have the strength she needs! She is so ready for baptism.  It´s going to happy I know it! 

The second person I want to tell you about it Miguel.  He is an older man and he is so great.  We gave the first lesson and he was so receptive to everything that we said! We talked to him about church, but he doesn´t have a phone so we were worried we wouldn´t see him again, but he showed up and stayed for 2 hours! So awesome! He has a little bit of a problem with the Palabra de Sabiduria, but I am excited to see what will come :)

I also want to tell you about Hafre, one investigator that we teach in ENGLISH! Ah! I can´t even tell you how much I love teaching him.  I can´t wait to feel the same way with Spanish! We gave him a Book of Mormon our first lesson and when we visited a few days later he was already to chapter 20.  He said he loved it and felt peace when he read it. He also said he was sorry he was so slow because he wants to really study it.  WHAT! so great.  I am so excited to see his progress!

The Jacksons came to our ward this week and oh my gosh you guys I have the best mission presidents ever.  I seriously love them! Seeing them and getting to talk to them was such a tender mercy.  

Spanish is still a struggle, but I am still sleep talking so no worries :) I can now say sentences instead of just words that don´t make any sense! Wahoo! My poor companion haha :) Alcorcon is stepping up their game too! When we first got here there were no churreria´s and I was so surprised, but they opened one this week! It is so cute I can´t wait to try it. 

That´s about it for this week! I love you guys thank you for all the love and support :) You are the best!

hermana marsh :) 

Cute Isael :) I love this little boy so much! His family feeds us once a week... amazing!

 I love my companion to ITALY and back :)
 Cooking for the ward Thanksgiving party! We made lasagna (which I surprisingly loved!), cornbread, 
 and cookies that did not work haha! It was a fun night :)
Eva, a member, fed us :) Yummiest ecuadorian dish!!!
 Eva is a member here and she is totally awesome I love her I feel like she is my sister.  This is at our ward party 

Monday, November 10, 2014

November 10, 2014

Hi cute family! It is so fun to get to hear from you guys every week.  Thank you for the emails you guys are the best and make me so so happy! I talk about you guys a little too much I think the other missionaries are going a little crazy, but hey it happens :) I really love you guys! I´m so excited to be with you forever! Happy Happy Birthday to my Lydie Loo and Dougie!!! I love you guys and hope you had/have a great day.  I am thinking of you!

It was a great week to be in Alcorcon. It is getting real real cold, I am very grateful for a warm shower, tights, boots, and people that let us have lessons in there houses because it gets pretty bad. I made a trip to Primark though and I am ready to go. Bring on the winter! Yes you read that right, there is a primark here. I´m going to be just fine the next 18 months :) 

We had a ton of lessons this week and that really is the best thing for a missionary.  I want to tell you guys about Angel.  Angel is about 70 years old and he is the cutest man. Seriously.  He was my first contact in the street and ever since we wrote his number down I have had a feeling about him. I want to share something with you that he said to us this week that makes me sound kind of dumb, don´t judge.  We were teaching his the first lesson and after I told him the first vision he said, I don´t understand all that you say Hermana Marsh, but I understood that.  AHH! So cool! He also said he had met with the missionaries before, but didn´t feel anything with them.  With us though, he can see the Spirit in our eyes.  I cried! And the best part is... he came to church!!! I don´t know what will come of him, but he makes being a missionary great.

Here´s the thing about my area.  The people are so nice.  For example, we met with this less active this week and without sounding too pessamistic, he really isn´t super interested, but he did the nicest thing.  He wanted to have our lesson at this cafe shop where he bought us manzania and chocolate cafe (what.) and he bought us groceries.  And he´s not even an active member! I could go on and on about the people here.  We get fed almost every day and I am totally going to gain weight haha! If you have any pointers send them my way please :)

Being a missionary is really hard at times, but I am trying my hardest to make the most of every moment because it really is incredible.  I get to opportunity to feel the spirit multiple times every day and see people become closer to their Heavenly Father.  What a better feeling! I feel really blessed to be a missionary in this area specifically.  My companion is the best she makes me laugh so hard.  I love her! Thank you so much for all the love and support you guys are the best.  If you are bored, send me pictures or quotes you like! I want to be a real sister missionary and have pictures and pinterest quotes everywhere :) I love you and hope you have a great week!

hermana marsh 

Monday, November 3, 2014

November 3, 2014 - Last pictures from the CCM and Starting in Alcorcón!

Hola my sweet familia! 

I´m so excited to be talking to you guys.  Hearing about your weeks is the best thing thank you so much! When we got to the mission home the asked me to play the piano which was way scary but I did it! Hermana Jackson made the yummiest food and we had the greatest devotional with President Jackson.  I love them! As you read from the Jacksons, my first area is a city called Alcorcon.  It is about 45 minutes south of Madrid and it is so great.  It is pretty small, but I appreciate it because we get to do a lot of walking rather than taking a bus or metro.  

My companion is Hermana Costagliola and she is absolutely incredible.  When I found out she was going to be mine I just started crying.  She is from Italy, speaks perfect English, and left the exact same day as Stephanie did.  The first thing we did when we got to Alcorcon was to go teach an Italian class.  What!  Oh I felt the love of the Lord so strong in that moment! She is absolutely great.  She is so hard working and very obedient which is exactly what I wanted.  We also have so much fun together she makes me laugh so hard! I feel so lucky to have her. 

We have a branch in Alcorcon and it is pretty small, this Sunday there were about 45 people there.  BUT there are 6 missionaries here and we are working hard so that number will grow soon :) The members are so so nice too.  I can´t even understand them and I love them already.  I have been fed Cuban, Ecuadorian, and one member even made me some American food- fried chicken and fries hahaha the sweetest! Heads up- I will gain weight on the mission and I am trying really hard to be okay with it haha! They get really offended if we don´t finish our meals or don´t take seconds, and the food is delicious so there ya have it ;) 

Timing here is great.  Our mission is from 7 to 11 and from 2 to 4 we have medio dia.  No one is out so we use that time to do whatever things we need to do to prepare for the day and it is so nice.  We usually are invited to eat dinner around 9 which will be a bit of an adjustment, but no worries! I really am amazed at how nice the people are here.  

The Spanish is coming! It´s super hard and I´m no where close, but even in just a week I have seen a change and I am excited to keep learning more.  I am doing really well! Everything was super new this week, so it was a little overwhelming, but things are starting to make sense now and I am excited to get to work.  We have been working a lot with progressing investigators and less actives and doing lots of contacting.  The work is growing! This morning I was reading in Mosiah about Alma the younger and his missionary work and it makes me so excited to be a missionary.  Thank you for all the love and support you guys are incredible.  I love you! Until next week :)

Hermana Marsh 

​Prostelyting with hermana santiago!
 Our last pday!

 Yummiest paella in plaza mayor! 
 I had to have my chocolate croissant :)
 At the Bank of Madrid! We got to go to the top and the view was amazing!

 Last park day! These cute sisters make me miss mine so much! 

 I loved the park.  I am going to miss it and these amazing missionaries so much!

 My teachers! 

 Last day at the CCM 

 Coolest mission president ever!
 Hermana Costagliola :) 
 Our treat for the ward halloween party :)
 We got caught in the rain- our investigators take great care of us :)