Monday, September 28, 2015

Tanta paz

Hey! I´m a real missionary!
You know what that means? I finished my 12 weeks of training! Now I´m not new. I´m just a junior companion :)

So remember how at church last week I was all stressed and it was crazy? Let me tell you about the miracles that happen when investigators come to church.
Last Sunday involved missing primary teachers, missionaries running around looking for manuals and copies of scriptures, babies screaming and throwing juice on the floor (thank goodness the floors are tile) and all sorts of craziness.
This week when we visited each of the investigators who was there, we asked them how they felt in church. They all responded similarly.
"So much peace. It was beautiful."

Let me tell you, that "peace" was the Spirit. It doesn´t matter what kind of crazy stuff happens at church, the investigators who come with us feel the Spirit there in a powerful way. It´s a miracle.

Spanish Lessons with Hermana Clark:
Galletas- Cookies. As in "We´re fine, thanks...but I guess we´d be better with some cookies." That´s a quote from my awesome companion.
Torta- a certain type of sandwich. But that´s a bit controversial, because in other countries it means cake. The Spanish textbook I use during language study uses it to mean cake in about every chapter.
Profeta- Prophet. As in "Prophets are men who are called by God to act in His name, to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and to direct His church on the Earth. A prophet is like a spokesperson for God. They have His authority to teach us His will. Prophets have written the scriptures that we have today, and we have modern-day prophets to guide us."
La Conferencia General- General Conference. As in "General Conference is this coming weekend! Those modern-day prophets I mentioned are going to speak to us. They will testify of Christ and give us direction that will greatly bless our lives. Everyone should watch General Conference! It happens in 4 sessions- Saturday at 10am and 2pm, andSunday at the same times. You can watch it at"

(Hannah's caption: Ooops. I don't know how to turn these pictures.)

Speaking of General conference, apart from the 4 sessions I mentioned, there is a women´s session and a session for the men.
The women´s session is broadcast the Saturday before General Conference weekend, and we went with one of our fantastic investigators. One of my favorite parts was in the talk that President Dieter F. Uchtdorf gave. I heard it in Spanish, so I´m not sure exactly what he said in English. But from my translation, it´s something to the effect of:
"So we´re just living with the hope of happiness in eternity?"
"Exactly, and right now is a part of eternity."
Eternal happiness doesn´t start after death. Eternity is happening right now, and we can enjoy eternal happiness right now!

A few experiences with investigators.
Last night we taught a lesson to our investigator who has a baptismal date. The coolest part was that as we were teaching, every comment she made was pretty much explaining the next part of the lesson. She learned things we hadn´t taught her yet. That´s what happens when you teach with the power of the Spirit.

This week we found two families who we started teaching.
We taught one of them yesterday. We had planned to teach about one topic, but as we started the lesson, the mother asked a question that she has always had. "There are so many churches. How do we figure out which of all the churches is true?" So we taught a completely different lesson that we had originally planned. It was powerful, and it answered her question.

One day this week we had a lesson with another one of our investigators. A young adult from the ward came with us. We were talking about the Book of Mormon and how it is the key to knowing whether this is the true church. The member who came with us is a convert to the church, and she bore a powerful testimony about when she prayed to know if the Book of Mormon was true. She said that moment was when she realized that she was ready to get baptized, though she had been telling the missionaries for a while that she wasn´t going to be ready any time soon. Our investigator heard that testimony and it really touched her. She told us she would like to get baptized, and she´s talking with her husband about when she´s going to do it.

So things are going great here in the Pueblo! Thank you for your support, and forgive me for attaching the photos incorrectly last week. I´ll send them again.
Have a great week! Watch General Conference!

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark
Last week's pictures:
(For Sept 16)

Monday, September 21, 2015

Viva Mexico!

¡Viva Mexico!
Quick quiz. First answer that comes to your mind.
When is Mexico´s Independence Day?
Did you say Cinco de Mayo? Let me educate you a bit.
History Lesson with Hermana Clark:
Mexico´s Independence Day is September 16th!
What? Then what in the world is this Cinco de Mayo that we celebrate?
May 5th was when the Battle at Puebla (where my awesome companion is from) happened. Research it, you´ll learn some stuff!

But September 16th happened this week, so the Pueblo was looking very festive and patriotic. They actually celebrate September 15th and 16th. The 15th late in the night they celebrate "la grita de independencia," which is the "shout of independence." They have a big event in each city/Pueblo and at midnight they yell "Viva Mexico!" Then the 16th they celebrate Independence because that is when the war started. 
Interesting stuff!

Spanish Lessons with Hermana Clark:
Morder- to bite. As in, "Hermana Clark, did my son bite you?" Yes. Indeed, her 1-year-old son did bite during a lesson. I was listening to my companion teach when suddenly I felt a sharp pain in my thigh just above my knee. The baby bit me. Hermana Hernandez said she will never forget the face I made.
Cumpleaños- Birthday. As in "HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOM!!" My Mom shares her birthday with Mexico! Isn´t that awesome?

La Libertad- Liberty. As in "As children of God here on the Earth, we have agency, or free will. We have the opportunity to choose liberty and eternal life through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, or captivity and spiritual death. We just need to make choices that draw us nearer to Christ in order to have eternal liberty and happiness. As missionaries, this is what we invite people to do."
So we had 6 investigators in church yesterday! It was amazing! It was also one of the most exhausting and stressful experiences of my life. We were running around like crazy to make sure they were all finding their classes and meeting people. It ended up being a fantastic Sabbath day, though. I am so grateful for that incredibly stressful experience.
We have 2 investigators with baptismal dates- it´s a Mom and her 8-year-old son. She´s the one who practically invited herself to be baptized in our first lesson. She is also the one who cut our hair last week. She also signed up to feed us every second Friday of the month. She is so cool. She is also learning a ton about the gospel and fully embracing it in her life. We always leave lessons with her smiling from ear to ear. She is just fabulous.
You also might remember the investigator who came to stake conference with us a few weeks ago. She also came to the cultural event for the temple. She came to church yesterday with her 3 kids and.....drumroll.....her husband! It was awesome! He hasn´t ever been against her investigating the church, but he hasn´t been especially supportive. Yesterday we passed by in the morning to take them to church, and at the last minute he decided to come. It was awesome!

We're also teaching 3 brothers who are 22, 17, and 12. It´s been tough to teach them all together in one lesson. Usually there are only 2 of them there. But our ward mission leader and his wife have really reached out to them and they´ve become good friends. They came with us to a lesson this week, and the ward mission leader was able to explain some doctrines in a way that they understood really well. It was a great lesson!
We love our investigators, and we love the members here. They are all amazing people!
Transfers are next week, so we´ll find out on Sunday where we´ll be. I don´t know if I´ll stay here or if I´ll be heading somewhere else. That´s the life of a missionary. We don´t decide where we go. We go where the Lord needs us. It´s truly amazing to feel the guidance of the Lord in such a strong way and see the miracles each day. I don´t know if I´ll be here next transfer, but wherever I go, I am so grateful for the time I´ve had here in the Pueblo this transfer. I love these people.

I love all you people too! Thank you for all your support! I actually wrote this email about 3 hours ago, and the internet crashed in the whole Pueblo right when I was going to send it. So I don't have time to answer many people. But I got to read most of the emails I got before it crashed, and I will try to answer next week!
I hope you have a great week!

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Put Shampoo on the Legs of the Bed


I hope everyone had a fabulous week. We had a good one!

Spanish lessons with Hermana Clark:
Muebles- furniture. But here it also means cars. There already about five other words for car, so I'm not sure why they need another one, but they definitely use it in Juarez and Casas Grandes. My companion said she had never heard it used that way until she came here, so I have no idea how big of a region uses it that way.
Cienpies- centipede. As in "Elder, there is a HUGE centipede in our house and we think it went under the carpet because we can't find it anymore. We cannot sleep here." (We still slept there and we didn't die, so that's good.)
Champu- Shampoo. As in, "Put your bed in the middle of the room where it's not touching the wall. Then put shampoo on the legs of the bed. Then the centipede won't be able to climb up to you." Thank you, Elder.

 Templo- Temple. As in "The blessings of the temple are beautiful. They give us greater understanding of our Heavenly Father's plan as well as power to withstand the storms of life. We should all work to live in a way that will allow us to enter the temple and enjoy those wonderful blessings."

Speaking of temples, the Mexico City Temple was rededicated yesterday, and we got to take part (via satellite transmission, because we are nowhere near Mexico City). It was such a beautiful experience. The peace that temples bring us is truly amazing.

Saturday, the day before the rededication of the temple, there was a Cultural Event that we also watched a broadcast of with some of our investigators. It was awesome! I would tell you all to look it up and watch it, but it's in Spanish. Maybe they have it translated into English somewhere, but I don't think so...
If you speak Spanish, check it out! It tells the story of the Book of Mormon as well as the history of the church in Mexico.
 You better believe we got super excited when they started talking about the Mormon Colonies (Which are about 10 minutes from us in the Pueblo). It's pretty amazing how the Lord arranged for the Mexican people to receive the fulness of the gospel.

So the Lord's timing is perfect. All throughout life, we can see it. This week, we saw it in a few little, seemingly unimportant ways.

Yesterday, we found out at 4pm that we needed to be in the stake center (10 minute drive away) at 5pm. So we called a member and she didn't answer. So we thought of another member who we rarely think to ask. We called her and said "can we ask you a huge favor?" She said, "well what is it? It's just that I'm heading to the stake center in about 20 minutes for a choir practice." It was perfect. She gave us a ride there and back.

Also, for a few weeks we've said that we need to get our hair cut, but we couldn't figure out where to do it. We were discussing it a couple days ago as we were walking to our awesome investigator's house to set an appointment with her. We got there and somehow in the conversation we found out that she is studying cosmetology. Oh! Cool! So she and her sister (who is also studying cosmetology) cut our hair this morning. 

Coincidences? I don't think so. Those are just 2 stories. There are so many instances of perfect timing that happen here. The Lord guides our work and provides for our needs. When we put our confidence in Him by keeping his commandments and following His guidance, we can see miracles, great and small.

Speaking of the set us a bit behind on time. So I now make my exit.

Thank you for you support and prayers. The Lord answers prayers, and your prayers are answered upon my head every day. 

¡Mucho amor!

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark
Also: Here are some late pictures from last week.
5 gallon water container? No big. I can definitely carry it from the Water House to our house.

The Vinagron. The photo simply does not do it justice. (The one someone had to smash with a shovel see this post for the story if you missed it.)

Yes. That fish has eyes. Did I eat them?

Our last night in Pradera Dorada.

Hannah's loving it!
The night they got to the Pueblo.

Also. Sorry for the day-late post! ~Michelle

Monday, September 7, 2015


¡Hola, queridos!

I hope everyone had a lovely week! I had a crazy one. We went on a trip to Juarez for a day, and travel always makes things a little wild.

Bueno. Spanish Lessons with Hermana Clark:
Lluvia- rain. As in ¨That is a lot of rain. Looks like we´ll have to stay in your house for another hour until it stops so that we can go home. Want to sing a hymn?¨
Murcielago- bat. As in "Something flew by super fast when I was turning on the boiler. Do you think it was a bat?" (Apparently bats are a theme of my mission.)
Ánimo- um...excitement? Cheer? Really positive outward emotions? I don´t know if there´s a word for it in English. Which is why my Zone Leader says, even in English, "We need to have animo!"
La oracion/orar- prayer/to pray. As in "Prayer is the way we can communicate with our Heavenly Father. Since he is our Father and we are His children, He wants to have communication with us. That is why He has commanded us to pray often. When we pray, we are truly communicating with our Father, and He will answer us."

So remember that awesome investigator I mentioned last week who came to church with her cousin? She´s super cool. She´s made changes in her life already that are making her more happy. She reads the Book of Mormon with the desire to learn. She prays with her children every day. She´s stopped doing things that really don´t need to be a part of her life. And she accepted a baptismal date! So We´re working with her to help her prepare to make that covenant.

Rewind to that day when she came to church. Another member of the ward brought a friend to church that day. He´s a teenage boy, and we taught him that week, but he didn´t seem all that interested. However, we set another teaching appointment with him for the next week, and when we showed up we met his older brother. They both had read several chapters of the Book of Mormon and they were very interested in learning more. It´s crazy how we never know who is ready to learn more. That lesson was awesome. We were at the church and the youth activities had just ended, so 3 of the youth asked if they could join us in the lesson. Typically when we have members in lessons with investigators, we call them "lessons with members present." This lesson was more like a "lesson with missionaries present." These youth are incredible, and they bore such powerful testimonies. 

You don´t have to be a full-time missionary to share the gospel in a powerful way.

Which reminds me of a funny story. We were reading "Preach My Gospel" this morning, and every time it said "full-time missionaries" I accidentally said "full-time members." It was actually really funny and we were laughing a lot. But it got me thinking. All members of the church are full-time members. We should always remember to make the required effort to fully live the Gospel of Jesus Christ. There isn´t "normal life" and "church life." There is "mortal life" and "eternal life." Let´s always remember to dedicate our lives to our Father in Heaven who loves us more than we can comprehend.

I´m sending photos today! Yay! I´ll probably send more to put on my blog than I will on this email.
Thank you for your continued support. I hope you have a fabulous week!

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark
Photo 1:​ The day after we were in Juares, I was on an exchange in Colonia Dublan. Those sisters have some neighbors... I was pretty excited to see them. 
Photo 2: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints!