Monday, November 17, 2014

Her First Preparation Day

I'm in Russia!!!!!!!!!!!!! :))))))))))  I cannot express how happy and excited I am that my dream of finally being here has come true.  It has also been a super crazy first week.  My trainer is this lovely sister from Wyoming and her name is Sister Williams.  I love her already, she is so nice and super fun!  We are white washing.  I'm not sure if that has always been a term, but if it is then you know how hard this first week has been.  But it gets better every day as we find our way around and get to know people.  Russia is beautiful and amazing and so much more different than I thought it would be.  And everyone lied about the people.  The people here are so kind and willing to talk to you and help you with anything.  I was absolutely pleasantly surprised.  And there's so much snow!  Everyone keeps laughing at me and saying that this is nothing, but I love it.  I've managed to keep warm and after this Sister Williams and I are going to buy me a Russian coat :D

But oh, SO much has happened this past week.  I'll start off with Spain.  My last day in the park was probably my happiest one.  I met so many good people who were ready to hear the Gospel.  I also met this one girl who I knew that Heavenly Father had sent me and my companion to find.  I knew in my heart that the Book of Mormon we gave her, was meant for her.  I really hope she joins our church.  I love her and pray for her every day.  And then we had our last Sunday and last Monday with our loved ones in Spain.  It broke my heart to leave my teachers and President and Sister Lovell and our fellow Russian missionaries who are serving in Novosibirsk.  I miss them so much, but it's ok because I know that I will get the chance to see them again and keep in touch with them.

Traveling to Russia took forever!  And I felt disgusting when we got off the plane.  But it was the coolest experience to listen to the conversations around me that were in Russian and to read all the signs and see how much I knew, or really how much I didn't know.  And then when we arrived in Yekaterinburg, President and Sister Christensen and other missionaries were waiting for us.  It was nicest welcome I could have ever gotten.  Oh momma, President and Sister Christensen are probably the nicest most loving people ever.  I feel so honored to be serving while they are.  I love them so much already.

I want to tell you about the members here.  Momma, I have never met such faithful people as these members.  I feel so humbled as I see what these people sacrifice and do just to go to church.  They remind me of our ward back home.  Everyone is so friendly and talkative and kind and patient and loving.  To be honest, I had been having a little bit of a hard time up until church yesterday.  Just because everything is so different and I don't understand a lot of what people say to me.  But meeting the members made me see how happy they are and made me remember my purpose.  I want to share the Gospel with everyone so that they can be just as happy as those members I met yesterday.  I know I will be taken good care of and I only hope I can return the favor. 

Oh!  And they want to host a luau.  The members have all asked me to teach them how to dance and they want to eat Hawaiian food.  I need recipes ASAP. Like for Shoyu chicken and some other easy Hawaiian foods.  And also can you please ask Kura for the music on a CD or something because I need some music to teach these sweet people how to dance :)

I want to tell you more but I have so little time

With all my love and every happiness,

Sister Lopez