Monday, October 26, 2015

That was Fast

Hola :)

I hope you all had a lovely week! We had a fun one.

Spanish Lessons with Hermana Clark:
Granizo- hail. As in "There has been quite a bit of hail here this week. I felt very at home."
Claro- clearly. As in "Oh, Hermana Clark. How clearly you speak Spanish! I never would have thought I was talking to an American!" That's a nice thing to hear over the phone from a native Spanish speaker :)
Pasar- Pass. Also pass by. As in "We passed by their house and taught them a lesson." My brother pointed out that I've been using the phrase "pass by" a lot when in English we typically say "drop by" or even just "go to" their house. But in Spanish, we say pass by.
Contestar/respuesta- To answer/an answer. As in "Our Heavenly Father wants to and always will answer our prayers. The answers may not come in the way we expect or in the timing we expect, but they will come."

Speaking of hail and answers to prayers, I have an awesome story.
Tuesday we left one neighborhood and headed out to wait for the bus so we could go to a neighborhood a little far away. It started raining, so we went and stood against this taco shop that had a bit of a roof over the edge. A few minutes later, it started hailing. It was just a little bit bigger than pea-sized hail, so we crouched down under the little ledge/counter thing to guard our heads. Then it picked up a lot and the parking lot started flooding. We were just kind of laughing because we were crouching under a taco cart in a hail storm. But then I had the thought that we should say a prayer. So we said a short simple prayer asking for a way to get to a safer place without getting hurt. We said amen, and about 3 seconds later, the hail stopped and the rain let up significantly. We just looked at each other and said "NO WAY." And we ran to the nearest convenience store just in time for the storm to pick up again for a few more minutes before we could walk home.

There's an immediate answer. Answers to our prayers are not always immediate, and they are not always the answer we expected. 

Wednesday we had planned for a member of the ward to come with us to a lesson with a certain investigator. Last minute, the investigator called and said she wasn't going to get home in time for us to come. We didn't want to cancel on the member, so we thought of a young couple we had met recently and called them. Miraculously, they were at home and had time. That lesson was so good. The member bore such a sweet testimony of how the gospel has blessed her family, and we know that this couple needed to hear it that night.

We continue to talk to everyone we see in the streets. Tuesday morning we were walking to an appointment and passed by a man outside his house with two motorcycles. My companion stops and says "How long have you had your motorcylces?" He looked kind of confused, and she said, "I used to work in a Harley-Davidson." What? Crazy how our past experiences help us connect with people. We talked to him for a while and found out that he was wanting to learn more about the Mormons. So we're going to teach him.

We keep on working, and we have a great time doing it.
Also, my companion is super fun.

She had to fix the pipes under our laundry sink. "Missionary by day, plumber by day tambien (also)." Because in the night time, we sleep.

​She made oatmeal-jello. Yes, you read that right. And it actually tasted fantastic.

Well, thanks for your prayers and emails. I love you all :)
Have a great week!

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark

Monday, October 19, 2015

Didn't See That One Coming


So the story starts with Hermana Hernandez and I sitting in our house during language study, happy as clams. Our Zone Leader calls us.

Elder: "Hermanas, I have good news and I have bad news. Which would you like first?"
Hermana Hernandez: "Oh no. The bad news."
Elder: "You have special transfers. Hermana Clark will be going to Del Valle. [Details of how to make the exchange of companions]."
Hermana Hernandez: "What's the good news?"
Elder: "Jesus Christ payed for your sins."

That is good news. The other good news is that my new companion is fabulous.

But before I introduce her, I just need to express my gratitude for the 3 and a half months I had with my awesome trainer. She taught me so much. She is a fantastic missionary, and she has become one of my best friends.

Now I'm here in Del Valle (yes, it's an area in Juarez) with Hermana Ferrell!

​She's 5'9", she's from Wyoming, and she's just about at her halfway mark in the mission! We have fun times. We invent interesting things to eat, we speak really good Spanglish, and we laugh a lot.
We also share a house with the other Sisters who serve in this ward.

​Hermana Hale and Hermana Garcia! Hermana Garcia served in the same ward as me in my first area, and Hermana Hale was the first Hermana  did exchanges with. It's fun to be with them again.

This area is very different from my last one. I´m back in the city! There are way more people in the streets during the day, so we talk to a ton of people. We had 3 pretty cool experiences street-contacting this week.

One day we passed a constuction site and one of the workers was leaving. We said "Hola!" and he said "Do you two speak English?" So we found out that he grew up in Colorado (hey, I've been there before) and he prefers to speak English. He told us that he's been searching for direction and how to find God, and he found some missionaries a few months ago who didn't speak English, but he stopped meeting with them when he moved across the city. We had a great conversation with him and we´re going to bring him a Book of Mormon in English this week.

Another day we were walking toward an appointment, but we had a lot of time. A 20-something year old young man passed us and we started talking to him. We showed him the Book of Mormon and explained a bit about what it talks about. We asked if we could pass by his house another day to teach more, and he asked if we had time right then to explain more. So we went to a nearby park and explained to him more about where the Book of Mormon comes from and some of the story. He was super interested and said that he's going to read it and pray about it.

Yesterday we were walking to church and passed a 20-something year old woman. We told her that we share a message centered in Jesus Christ, and we asked her if she believes in Him. She said that she believes in God, but since there are so many churches, she doesn't know which one is right. So we asked if we can pass by to help her find an answer to her question, and she said yes. She lives outside of our area, though, so some other missionaries are going to teach her.

So we street contact a lot. A lot.

It's different than the Pueblo, but I like it. Oh, our Mission President also lives in this ward, so we see him a lot.

What did I forget...
Ah. Spanish Lessons with Hermana Clark:
Gilo dental- floss. As in, "I'm being super obedient and flossing every day.
De repente- suddenly. As in "The special transfer happened suddenly. We didn't even see it coming."
Convenio- covenant. As in "A covenant is a two-way promise with God. We promise to keep His commandments, and he promises to give us many blessings. When we make and keep covenants with our Heavenly Father, he will bless us more than we can imagine."

So those were my adventures this week. The Lord guides this work, and I am so blessed to be a part of it.

Have an awesome week!

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark

Monday, October 12, 2015

Esto es Verdad

¡Buenos Días!

Here goes a super speedy email.

Spanish Lessons with Hermana Clark:
Tripas- intestines of I-don't-know-what-animal. As in "I ate intestines of I-don't-know-what-animal this week. Yum."
Perderse- to get lost. As in "I was on exchanges for almost 2 full days this week in my area without my companion who knows everything about the area. It's a good thing we didn't get lost."
Bautismo/Bautizarse- Baptism/to get baptized. As in "Baptism is the first covenant we make with out Heavenly Father to prepare ourselves to one day return to His presence. When we are baptized, we are washed clean of all our sins, and we promise our Heavenly Father that we will keep His commandments, repent when we mess up, and press forward in faith. He promises us incredible blessings when we take this step."

Speaking of baptism, 2 of our awesome investigators aren't awesome investigators anymore.

​Now they're awesome members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints!

This single mom and her son got baptized on Saturday, and it was a beautiful experience!
​The couple on the right are her aunt and uncle. They invited her to church some weeks ago. The rest of her family are not members of the church, but they came to support her, and it was a special day.
(The man to the left of me is our Bishop. He's super cool, and he was also our investigator's teacher in middle school.)
She actually hurt her foot pretty bad playing volleyball the night before, so she couldn't put weight on it. She got baptized in a chair. It went smoothly though, so that was good.
The best moment of the day, though, was when she bore her testimony after the ordinance. Before she got up to speak, she told us she was super nervous and didn't know what to say. We told her to just talk about her experience learning about the gospel and how it's helped her.
She began by explaining that her aunt had invited her to church and her cousin introduced her to us. Then she started to cry, and said "I know that this church is true. I know that what the Book of Mormon says is true. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen."

It was such a sweet moment to hear her bear her simple and firm testimony of the Book of Mormon.

I just want to add my testimony to hers.

The Book of Mormon is a book of scripture. It contains the words of God given by means of His prophets. The Book of Mormon contains the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and we will have a closer relationship with our Heavenly Father by studying and applying the Book of Mormon than by any other book. I know that the Book of Mormon is truly the word of God because I have read it and asked my Father in Heaven if it is true, and He answered.
Everyone can and should do this. I know that if you read the Book of Mormon and pray to ask your Father in Heaven if it is true, He will answer you.

I love you all, and I am so grateful for you.
I am incredibly grateful to be here doing this work.
Our Father in Heaven loves His children. He has provided the way for us to have eternal happiness.

Have a fantastic week!

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark

Monday, October 5, 2015

The Batty-Pueblo

Hola :)

So 2 weeks ago while we were waiting for our transfer call, I told Hermana Hernandez that if we stayed together this transfer, we could start singing Christmas hymns in the mornings.
We started singing Christmas hymns this week.
Now I find myself humming "Oh come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord" a lot. And every time she looks at me with a smile and says "Christmas!"

So that means we didn't get transfered!
We did move houses though, and that was an ordeal.
Nah, that's a bit dramatic. It just took almost an entire afternoon when we could have been proselyting. But we're nice and cozy in our new house. And we have yet to find a single bat, centipede, vinagron, or cockroach.
Although, a couple nights ago we were walking to a lesson, and there was a bat flying around above us. I said "ooh, a bat!" and my companion said, "it's the 'Batty-Pueblo!'" We laughed a lot.

Spanish lessons with Hermana Clark:
Pastel- cake. As in, "We may or may not have eaten cake in our district meeting last week to celebrate our Zone Leader's birthday."

​Meditizar- ponderize. As in "Ponderize isn't actually a word. But it's meant to be a combination of the words 'ponder' and 'memorize.' When we ponderize a scripture each week, it will give us great strength of spirit." See Elder Devin G. Durrant's talk from General Conference yesterday.
El Día de Reposo- The Sabbath Day (more directly "the day of rest"). As in, "Remember the Sabbath Day, to keep it holy. When we sanctify the Sabbath Day, or dedicate our Sunday to the Lord, we receive great blessings. We receive greater spiritual and physical strength for the rest of the week. We build our testimonies and our relationships with our Heavenly Father. Above all, we show the Lord that we love Him. That is important, because He loves us."

Seriously. Our Heavenly Father loves us. He loves us so much. He loves YOU so much. So much more that you can understand. And you know what's incredible? When we dedicate our lives to Him, we can feel His love not only for us, but for His other children.

We love our investigators! And we love the members here! These people are amazing!
Several of our investigators are progressing a lot. They're building their relationships with their Father in Heaven through prayer, scripture study, and attending church. They feel the Spirit in a powerful way. It amazes me.

I hope everyone enjoyed General Conference like I did. I received answers to several questions. I even received them listening in Spanish. If you didn't have the chance to watch it all, you can watch the recordings of it at I highly suggest it!

Well, that's what I have for now. We continue to work hard here in the Pueblo. I am so blessed to be here. Thanks for your prayers :) I hope you all have an awesome week!

¡Que les vaya bien! :)

~Hermana Hannah Jo Clark