Monday, May 26, 2014

Semana 19 in Iquitos (May 19th, 2014)

Wow do I have a lot to update you on this week! Hermana Centeno and I are pleased to announce that two of our families that we taught got married on saturday, Guido and Betsy, and Meredith and Segundo!! Woohoo! and after the ceremony, Betsy, their daughter Emily, and our other investigator Sofia got baptized!! And Segundo will be getting baptized this Saturday.  This week was a little crazy, filled with trips downtown to do marriage papers, we had a bar-b-que activity with the ward to help raise money for the matrimonies, decorating the chapel, and a little bit of stress on the side! Like I said the other week now that we're doing all the marriage papers it's a little more work and matrimonies and baptisms always stress me out a little bit but they also are so awesome I cannot describe to you how great it feels to see these families come together, be married, and enter into the covenant of baptism. Each on of them bore their testimonies after being baptized and hearing them firmly state their faith in Jesus Christ brings so much joy and warmth to my soul, Its not something I can even describe. After being baptized, Sofia pulled me aside and thanked us for everything and said that she feels like she really has started a new life, now that she has come to this great step of baptism.  It was an awesome day, the Elders also had a couple that got married so we had a joint ceremonies and they all got baptized afterwards. It was such a beautiful day and for real I'm still on cloud 9. I love being a missionary.
Oh yeah, I went to Ecuador this week. Hehe. So on Tuesday the zone leaders told me I would be flying to Lima the next day (Iquitos is surrounded by rivers on all sides and there's no roads connecting Iquitos to the rest of the world so leaving always means flying), but this news was normal because I still have to do some visa stuff. This is a really exciting thing for people serving here in Iquitos because Lima means McDonald's, and Papa John's and all kinds of other delicious American things that sadly don't exist in island cities in the middle of the jungle. So We flew in Wednesday night and they took us to a super ritzy beautiful hotel (WITH HOT WATERRRRRRRR). Yeah you bet I showered for a good 30 minutes. So yeah Lima was nice I legitimately thought it was about 38 degrees there it felt so cold to me, but when I saw the temperature it was actually 68...hahah, I'm so weak. So the next morning they piled us in a van and took us back to the airport....which confused me a little because I was expecting to go to immigrations. So when we got to the airport they were like 'Great, so you guys need to leave the country, so you're going to Ecuador?. hahaha what. So we hopped on a flight to a place I've never heard of called Tumbes and when we got there it was SUPER hot again and they piled us in a van and drove us to Ecuador lol. So that was an adventure, it's a lovely country with diverse people, but sadly I was only in Ecuador for about 2 hours. We had to leave the country and re-enter. But the good news is I have the Ecuador stamp on my passport so it COUNTS. Then they dropped us off in Tumbes in some plaza and we ate dinner and acted like tourists for a while, took pictures by the river. We ran into some missionaries that are serving in Tumbes too and they gave us some tips on where to eat and whatnot. So then we flew back to Lima, stayed the night in the Hotel, and flew back into Iquitos in the morning. haha so yeah that happened.
But for real this week was so great, different but I loved it. My testimony and desire to serve the people of Iquitos gets stronger and stronger every day. I love you all and hope you all know that I am working my heart out here and loving every minute of it!

Hermana Benyo

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