Monday, May 11, 2015

6 More Days!




WE HAD OUR 2 BAPTISMS THIS WEEEEEEK!!!!
Susan and Omar are seriously the best.... Susan is a single mother of an 8 year old and a 2 year old, Omar and Emi. 
It was the most spiritual baptism I have yet so far, the spirit was soooo strong, her mother came to church too and was so grateful to see her daughter and grandsons happy. 
They were baptized on Sunday because it was Omar's 8th birthday :) Today is the party, we are heading over after we finish writing. 
Omar knows more about Joseph Smith than any other investigator hahaha Susan is more active than probably all the members and is just so happy. 
Today we had a district party, we played baseball and it wasn't too fair hahaha because I kept hitting the ball into home runs and everyone was like how is that even possible... hahaha it felt really good to play again :)
we are super excited for mothers day too, I think 6 my time is fine, hna peñaloza is checking with her family right now, if i hear anything ill let you know, but i think 6 is good. :)
It was a crazy week with our baptismal interviews, 2 intercambios, and some crying sessions haha but we are great. we are very sad because we know that we will probably be having cambios, but i will let you know when we skype. 
When we skype you will have to tell me what crazy plans you have set, ill only have 4 and a half months left! i don'
t like to count down, but its a little tricky when everyone says they can smell you dying hahahaha
I did get the package, por fin, and the cream felt sooooo good.... thank you :)
i love you so much! we have 2 baptisms for sure planned in the next few weeks, we are super excited.
love you
hna ibarra



Susan and Omar's Baptism

Hermana Ibarra and Hermana Parslow reunited again

Two Hermanas in the rain

2 More weeks until we skype!


Familia!!!
We had a ton of success in the Hawaii activity, we actually have a new baptism date from it and lots of new investigators!
we have lots of baptisms planned for may, but the ward isn't satisfied haha so we are going to try to put two or 3 more for May, so please pray that the lords will will be done :)
we are soooo happy, we have a TON of work this week, 2 intercambios and leadership counsel and then one more week and we have changes! well, we aren't sure if we have changes yet, but i think so :( 
I don't really care when i speak, you guys can plan everything. I don't want to think about what i will do when i get home yet hahaha so you guys can just surprise me with whatever.
This week has been pretty intense on the sister training leader end, lots of desanimo in the mission right now, but we are super happy because a lot of our sisters are doing alright and having a lot of success. :)
We have 2 more cambios then hna lopez leaves, then i leave, then hna peñaloza leaves.... 

Learning some Tai chi from a Sister in the Ward



Frying up some chicken fried steak


On splits with Hermana Aitken from the states

This sweet family was sad to find out that Marissa had her birthday before coming to their area, so they baked her a cake anyways.  There is never a bad time for cake.


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

FOR THE FIRST TIME IN FOREVER........... ACTUALLY THE FIRST TIME.‏




Dear Family,
I can't believe how much god loves us and loves the people her in Atempan... For the first time in my mission EVERYONE OF OUR INVESTIGATORS WAS AT CHURCH!!!!!  We have only 7 but of those 7, 5 have super solid baptism dates!!!! 4 of the baptisms will be in May and the other the beginning of June. The other two investigators that don't have a baptism date are a married couple and we are going to try to put a baptism date with them this week :)
Also, we had the Hawaii activity and we got some great references, one of which is a daughter of a less active member WHO WANTS TO BE BAPTIZED!!!  This next week we already have FILLED with appointments, 2 intercambios, half an intercambio, a planning session, 2 family home evenings, and monthly forms. I have never been happier and sooooooooo tired hahaha there is a reason we only serve 18 months, my body is slowly trying to die on me, but I won't let it hahaha
Our investigators are seriously amazing. we started having SUPER family home evenings, we invite all of the investigators over to a members house and we have a short lesson and play games. This last week we had OVER 30 PEOPLE in the house... we have to split up our group into 2 family home evenings now hahaha. 
 I want to give you the details of each investigator, because they are seriously seeing soooo many miracles in their lives, but I can give you their whole stories when we skype :))))
but...
here are their names so you can pray for them...
Susan and Omar 3 de mayo
Natalya 23 de Mayo
Claudia 21 de Mayo
Laura 4 de Junio
I really hope i am here to see all their baptisms, but we have cambios in 3 weeks and I think I might be going because i

have more time here in Tlaxcala than hna penaloza does, but we will see, the president likes to do crazy things :)

love you so much, please keep praying for the investigators and for my companion. 
seeeeeeeeee yoooooooooooo super soooooooooooooooooooooon ;D
hna ibarra


Intercambios with Hermana Summers and Hermana Garcia

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh we were so sad, Elder Grasinger had to switch missions this week. he has only 3 weeks here, but the sun is treating his skin terribly, so he will now be serving in Vancouver Washington. I told him he would love it, that it rains hahaha he has a lei because we took one from Hawaii activity to say goodbye. he blessed my life a lot with his missionary spirit, he will be greatly missed.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Week of miracles enserio (serious)

Dear family,
where do i start... ENRIQUE AND LILA WERE BAPTIZED!!!
Their baptisms were amazing, so many people came, the two were so happy and excited and completely perfect! They both brought family and friends to their baptisms and a friend of Lila's was so excited (she also attended general conference) that she told us that she too wants to be baptized and a friend of Enrique wants to take the lessons :) they are awesome missionaries :) Enrique will receive the priesthood next Sunday and the both of them are going to have callings! though they only have days as members they act and have testimonies of members of years :) they are seriously miracles. Susan and Omar are also super excited about their baptisms in a few weeks. we are super happy buy no we hardly have any people to teach, so we are hoping to find lots of new investigados this week. we are going to be having an activity this Saturday "viajar a hawaii" i donSt know if you remember i did it a year ago in Serdan and we had a ton of success so we are going to try it again :) 
i had a pretty cool miracles this week (well, a bunch jaja) first miracle, Saturday night i was on the phone with one of the assistants to the president and i told him that we were searching for new investigadors and he promised me that if i prayed for a family to teach the lord would provide so that night and the following morning i prayed specifically for "a family of 5 or 6" to teach "a family with a mom, a dad, and kids". Sunday morning after church my companion says to me that hna libertad was at church with her family. this sister was a reference our first week here in atempan, she is a less active member her husband inactive and they have 3 children. we had spoken to her once, but we could never find them so we stopped the search. yesterday they were at church and we talked to her and she said her daughter is 9 and isn't baptized but wants to be, so we have an appointment with them tomorrow. i was like "ITS MY FAMILY OF 5 THAT I PRAYED FOR" jaja 
Also, Saturday morning we had leadership interviews with the president. i talked to him about my plans to be a better missionary and a better leader, he listened and talked a little bit and then he says "i don't know if i want to tell you this after talking to you about your goals" (like he was going to give me correction) and i said "no, please tell me" and he said "you are the best missionary that I have"..... and I just started crying. he said "a mission president knows his strong sheep and you are one of them, yeah sometimes you are a little hard on yourself, but you are one of the best I got" he told me that i teach with the spirit and that i am respected and loved as a missionary and leader and that he is happy to have me. i was so grateful and in tears that all i could say was thank you. i am going to miss him so much when he leaves in July, he is a man of incredible spirit and revelation and for him to tell me that i was one of his strong sheep was equivalent to God telling me that...... i have my final interview with him tomorrow i am extremely happy and sad at the same time. 
We had to reschedule hna parslows and hna mazons intercambio, so i didn't get to work with her, but we still saw each other in the offices because we had to renew our visas and in a multi zone conference that we had with president. 
This week was extremely busy and full with ups and downs but i have never been so happy and blessed in my life. i feel like the promises in my patriarchal blessings are being fulfilled, and more.
please pray for hna Peñaloza, she is going through a hard time right now and please pray that i may know how to help her.
i love you so much. i strive to be the best i can each day so i can live with each and every one of you for the eternities
love hna ibarra

Sightseeing on P-Day

Marissa and a waterfall

Hermana Ibarra and Hermana Penalosa selfie

Hermana Penalosa after a long day of leadership splits

I found a typo on a map

Marissa and her teeth

Enrique's Baptism

Lila's Baptism

Week of meetings

Week- 55
Area- Tlaxcala, Atempan
Companion- Hermana Penalosa


Dear family,
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH This general conference was AMAZING i hope you got to watch all of the sessions and if not im going to invite you to repent haha it was great! we found it strange that the prophet didn't start or end the conference, but it was a good reminder that we don't go to conference for him, but to listen to how we can repent. i like how president eyring started off by speaking about fasting and helping the poor. i also enjoyed the talks about the sabbath day, it is a real problem here with the cell phones during the meetings, so i'm sure it is probably worse there (i was reminded of the conference when they talked about angry birds haha i hope we were all obedient this time around haha) i loved the family and marriage focus, the shiblons in our lives, the dance steps of the gospel, and the talks about grace. i kinda got the vibe that we as members are just going through the motions, we are conforming to a standard way below our greatness and we aren't enjoying the miracles that the gospel is in our lives. i just want to share my testimony with you all for my love of the gospel. at the beginning of my mission i can say that i was obedient, but out of utter fear that if i wasn't i wouldn't be saved or receive love from God. Now, like Elder Uchdorf said, i can be obedient because i want to be, because it brings me joy, because it is how i can show my love for God. I love being a member of this church and being a missionary :)
This week we are going to be starting intercambios again, and Hna Parslow had changes and is in Tlaxcala, which means I get to go on splits with her again, im so excited!!!! I was super jealous, Tuesday we went to CAMBIOS and there was a companionship of a sister and the missionary that she trained who got put together again, i would love it if i could be with hna herrera again haha. 
My mouth, la verdad, is great! I have been doing my treatements as I can and when i do the massage it hurts of course in the moment, but i havent had randoms shocks of pain during the day like before. I am going to go pick up my retainer tomorrow.
Friday we had a leadership counsel which was amazing, as usual, we talked about how we need to be more diligent working with the members and what we as leaders could do to help the mission work more with the members. 

love you all so much, i hope you all have your goals written after watching such an inspired conference. :) 

One other thing.... in 5 weeks its mothers day! which means we will be skyping. we already have the whole cambio planned out, we are so busy haha and so on the 10th of May i was thinking we could skype in the afternoon, because we have church service and then we eat, so then i could write you at like 4 or 5 or 6 my time, whenever you can :)

love you so much! have a great week, remember who you are and what you stand for, make good choices, repent daily and happily, jesus loves you :)

hope you had a great easter, the catholics took it super seriously.On friday (day of christs death) there was NOBODY in the streets.... and hardly any combis passed by and all the stores were closed. it is fun to be in another country to see their traditions. I taught hna peñaloza how to color eggs and make deviled eggs haha 

i will try my best to send pictures, it has been hard because my memory card got a suuuuuuuuuuper bad virus, but we fiiiiiiiiinally found someone who could fix it, so we will see if it works.

love yoooooooooooooooou
hna ibarra

Marissa and Hermana Penalosa managed to get their picture taken even though they didn't get transfered.

1 Year?




Week- 52
Area- Tlaxcala, Atempan
Companion- Hermana Penalosa


This was a pretty great week until we got chewed out by a grumpy man and now i'm all stressed out haha
We have a new investigator named Lila Fritz. She was an old investigator who almost got baptized but wasn't living the law of chastity, so she couldnt. we found her by a miracle. the last sunday the ward organized an activity for all of the investigators to go see meet the mormons and when they asked us for our numbers we told them that we didn't have anyone that was interested. later, the stake president called and told us that we didn't have faith sufficient enough the first time and that they needed 20 people to fill up the bus so we need to pray and find. :P because we had already asked all of the investigators we had we started plowing through the list of old investigators looking for SOMEONE who wanted to go. we found her name and she told us that she already had plans to go see it and that she wanted to see us. we set the appointment for Tuesday and when we showed up to her house she told us that she LOVED meet the mormons and that she wants to marry a mormon hahahaha we asked her about her past with the missionaries and she told us that she had huge desires to be baptized but when the missionaries told her that she had to live the law of chastity she didn't want to because she was enjoying her time with her boyfriend. weeeeeellllllll She isn't with this man anymore and we explained the law of chastity to her and shared the scripture in alma 38 about if we bridle our passions we will end up loving the person more (the reason she didn't want to live it) and she said she would live it because she wants to be baptized!!!! we set a date for her (april 11, the same day as enrique) and we are sooooo excited because she came to church too!!!!
Another miracle this week, Enrique was struggling with being separated from his family so we invited him to do a fast with us and he accepted. a few days later when we arrived at his house he told us that his daughter had come to visit him. he was sooooo happy and he says "it was because we all fasted". he is seriously the best investigator i have ever had, he has an extreme amount of faith, i love him so much. he always comes to church, he is excited for his baptism and excited for general conference. he always reads and we always have family home evening with him and his sister and mom. HE IS THE BEEEEEEEST!!!!
I know that i still have six months left, but it is kinda hitting me hard because i know how fast it will be. i try not to think about school and stuff, but with helping hna peñalosa apply its kinda hard hahaha but i read this awesome talk this week called THE FOURTH MISSIONARY that really pepped me up, it is incredible to know that everything depends on the decisions i choose to make. if i give myself completely over to the lord i will be happier and life will be easier. 
my release date is the 16th. the 15th are cambios and i will leave mexico the 16th. it hurts a lot to think about going home, but i know god has a perfect plan. its not that i'm scared, i just love being a missionary.... so much.... and yeah i guess i'm scared of going back into the dating world because i know that is my "next mission" haha and i don't want to lose this spirituality that i have. i don't want to lose the authority and the name tag.... but everything has its season and i realize that God is planning so much for me for when i get home. i have to goal to be happy during this last little bit of time because i remember how sad and depressed hna zarate was her last 3 months and i dont want to be like that, i want to be the happiest i have ever been, and i have never been so happy. i feel like my heavenly father is blessing us with so many miracles. some hard things are happening with our sisters right now, but they are things that i cant control, so i just remind myself to be patient and i feel happy. i have never felt so happy as i do serving the sisters. we had 2 intercambios this week and i got to help 2 sisters who were struggling with lack of success but it was amazing to see their attitudes, how though they haven't had the success they have wanted they are happy, they see the small miracles, and i love that about the church, about being a missionary.

love you so much
hna ibarra

Mexico Puebla North Mission Leadership


More Craziness!

Week- 50
Area- Tlaxcala, Atempan
Companion- Hermana Penalosa



Dear Family,
I have LOTS of photos to send you this week and lots to tell!!!
Tuesday we had intercambios and i stayed in the area with hna Aiken, a brand new american sister. it was so amazing to work with her and to feel of the amazing spirit she had. i reflected on my first three months and how hard and frustrating it was to not be able to communicate how i wanted to but how much i relied on the spirit, like hna aiken. we literally had a perfect day together :)
Wednesday we returned from intercambios, had district meeting and then went out to another intercambio. i went with hna pacheco again. we didn't get to teach too much because she was sick but we had a nice long chat together and to hear her conversion story again just reminded me that miracles do indeed exist.
Thursday we planned with the sisters and then planned for ourselves. Friday we went to Puebla to the presidents house for leadership councel and it was AMAZING as usual. we talked alot about how we can help the mission have more baptisms and it reenergized me to work that much harder so i can baptize as many people as i can in these last 6 months. 
i have been thinking about how i want to finish my mission and i found a talk called Consecrated Missionary that so many people had told me about and I looooved it, my plan is not to get trunky haha but to sprint to the end. This week went i started thinking about how much time i have left i realized that it is going to be sooo fast because the president already has planned out what he wants to do with me. 2 cambios more as STL and then 2 cambios training a new missionary and then i'm home....
On Saturday we also had another mini intercambio because i had to take a sister the the hospital for a checkup so her companion could work with my companion because they hadnt done anything all week, but it was kinda fun to go back to Apizaco, even though i didn't even see anyone hahaha
ENRIQUE IS AMMMMMAAAZINNNG!!!! HE is our golden golden investigator, he has is baptism set for after general conference and he is soooo excited, we talk about his baptism every lesson and about general conference :)
love you all so much!
P-Day at Cacaxtla







Conozca Los Mormones‏

Week- 49
Area- Tlaxcala, Atempan
Companion- Hermana Penalosa


AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH WHY IS IT MARCH ALREADY!!?? jajaja
Yes, I looooove my companion to death, we are going to have a crazy week this week so i wont be able to see much of her this week, but we always have lots of fun together when we are together. last week we had two intercambios and then this week we are going to have 2 more, back to back and el concilio de liderazgo with the president! I will be going on intercambios with a brand new american missionary tomorrow, so we will see how that goes hahaha
Thanks for looking into that for me. I have been thinking about it and I dont think I want to get back to school right away because I think I need to work and be with you guys for a little while, but I will think and pray about byu... everyone is going there and I dont think i want to because i love byui so much, but maybe it is where i need to go because it occasionally comes to mind. 
YES! I would love to go on a trip when I get back, I want to keep busy because Im afraid of just sitting around the house all day... haha because I want to go visit (convert jaja) lots of people and be with you guys, but i know that school will be starting for everyone, so it might be tricky, so whatever you think is best. I just want to get working right away, but also have some free time to go to the temple and help out the missionaries for a little while. and yes, i was thinking about going to conference when i got back :)
100 INNINGS? crazy hahaha so he did make the team?
Well we thought we had some great investigators but some things are telling us that maybe not so much, but we do have faith in one investigator that is GOLDEN! His name is enrique, he is the brother of a member and he has asisted church 3 times and he loooves it and wants to be baptized, we put a date for the 5th of april but then realized that that was general conference (i cant believe it is conference already again) so we are going to see if we can move it up a week, keep your fingers crossed :) Also, we havent been able to visit with karla, the girl who could be baptized anyday she wants to, so please pray that we can find her
today all of the zones in tlaxcala got together to watch MEET THE MORMONS and I loved it. I felt the spirit and I cried a little during the part when the missionary was holding his moms hand in the car and leaving for his mission because I thought of the day I left. i cant believe that was a year ago!
well, i love you all so much, i will try to send you photos :)
con amor, hna ibarra


The District


Hermana Ibarra and Hermana Penalosa

Hermana Ibarra and Hermana Penalosa

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I am in Zion!

Week- 48
Area- Tlaxcala, Atempan
Companion- Hermana Penalosa

Well, as you know cambios were a week ago. My new companions name is Hna Peñalosa, she is from Tijuana and I love her so much, she is super sweet, super feminine and looooves hello kitty hahaha. this is her first cambio as a stl so I get to train her and teach er how fun it is! Also, we are both new in the area, so this week was fun getting to know everything together, my area is called Atempan. It is about 45 minutes away from Apizaco where I was and this week we had stake conference so I got to see some friends from the old ward. I have a feeling that this will be the best ward yet!!! It is literally Zion here. We have a ward mission leader (which is a miracle in itself) and he is incredible! It was his first week as well and he was so humble wanting to know anything and everything and he has lots of ideas and love for the missionary work. he calls us almost every night to tell us who will be coming to lessons with us. me  and hna Peñalosa really want to get on the ball so we asked them for the list of members without baptisms and of the few investigators we did have they are amazing and preparing for baptism! we have one girl named Karla, she can be baptized any day, she just needs permission from her mom. we have another family who is just awesome and we hope that they can be baptized in the next three weeks. we have a goal with the Ward mission leader that we will have 10 baptisms every month between the 2 companionships in the ward, so we have to start searching for lots of people to teach. 
I hope that you can pray for Karla and Lesca and Dulce and Yubith and Emma so we can get them all baptized :)
i love being a missionary
con amor hna ibarra


Hermana Ibarra and Hermana Penalosa

I thought last week was crazy

Week- 47
Area- Tlaxcala, Xicotencatl
Companion- Hermana McBride


Well, this week we did pretty much nothing work wise, but everything else you could think of we did... we had quite the show  hahaha.
Well, to tell you about how this week went I must first tell you the full story about what happened last week.... please don't worry, all is well now :)
It was super early on Saturday morning (not this Friday, but the last) and my companion tapped my shoulder. I woke up and she showed me a message that she had typed on her phone. She told me that she had had a dream that our mission president came up to her and said that we needed to be careful and that we needed to leave the house immediately. She NEVER receives revelation through dreams so she knew this wasn't just a random dream. She woke up to tell me but she felt very strongly not to speak and not to leave the room. She asked what we should do so I prayed about it and I immediately felt like indeed something was off. We sent a message to the elders and they came with a brother in the ward. When they got to the house they sent us a message that they were outside and my companion was about to open the door when I asked her to wait and we sent a message to them to first put a blessing on the house. After a few minutes we walked out and the brother and Elder Gallegos later told us that they felt something was wrong too when they got close to the house and in that moment they received our text and then they felt better. They took us to this brothers house and we chilled with them for a little while until it was light out and then we went back to the house to shower. and get ready for the day. Well, the minute we stepped in we felt like our stomachs dropped to the floor, and Hna McBride didn't feel safe separating so we decided to just get dressed and leave to do our planning session in the church. As I was waiting for Hna McBride to finish up getting ready I immediately felt this overwhelming sadness and fear, to the verge of some tears so I told Hna McBride that we had to go. We left, the elders and the brother went back to the house with us later to give us and the house a blessing and they said we would be fine. We spent the night and the next morning I felt fine, but Hna McBride was in tears saying that she wanted to go home she felt sooo bad. We called the Elders telling them that it wasn't OK for us to live in this house anymore, so we packed everything and went to a house that the brother was renting. then all was well...
We weren't exactly sure what was in the house, but it was the freakiest thing ever...soooo this whole week we were in the process of changing homes and cleaning because the spirit is just not present. Tuesday night we get a phone call from the member who lives next to our old house and she tells us that our door is OPEN, and she wanted to call to see if we were there, and of course we weren't... but we didn't think much of it because we thought she meant the first door, which sometimes got left open but then the next night her son told us that he had seen the door open and it was the first one, the one to get into the house and we locked it up good before we left so we called the owner to make sure that she hadn't been there and she hadn't. Also, i don't know if you watch Apizaco news haha but there has been a man running around here beating up women every night and after we left the house people began to tell us this story.... 
Of course we were in communication with the zone leaders, assistants, and president during all of this and so on Friday we got a call that we would close the area because of all that had happened. 
It was amazing to see all of the revelation that we received coming to a full circle. we didn't know why we had to leave the house but after the open door and all the freaky stories we felt soooo good that we followed all of the impressions we received.
Well.... We hear that we will be closing the area so we go to the church because we had a lesson with Melissa and the bishop is there so we tell him that we will be closing the area and that elders will be taking our place and he blows up.... haha he was soooo mad because he did NOT want to have more elders, he wanted his sisters because of all the work we have been doing and for all the baptisms we had so of course people start hearing him and saying "what, the sisters are leaving, what happened..." and so we just told everyone that it was for safety reasons, for the man going around (because we didn't want to freak people out with our whole "there was a bad spirit in our house" because they take that stuff a whole lot more seriously) and it was like it was the end of the world hahaha it was so sweet to see how much the ward loved us and how much they wanted us to stay, they started to formulate plans on how they could help us stay hahaha.
It was the worst feeling in the world to tell Melissa that we would be leaving.... no, she couldn't be baptized this week because she still doesn't have permission but she will continue to learn from Elder Gallegos. :)
I thought saying goodbye in Serdan was hard, this time it has been soooo hard too.... I don't want to know what I will feel when I have to leave for good in 7 months.... I love these people so much, I have been sad, but at the same time happy because I know that other sisters won't have to have so much happen to them like what happened to us. 
We have been running around preparing for changes so much that I am exhausted and have a little cold, but nothing can stop this work! I love being a missionary! :)
My valentine this year was my companion, she bought me a rose and we ate cereal together hahaha.
i hope you all have a great week, i love you all sooooo much!
Tomorrow i will be heading to Puebla for changes with Hna McBride, but it wont be a surprise where i am going because they already told me hahaha I will still be a sister training leader and i will be in Tlaxcala still, but in Atempan. 
Remember when you told me you say Meet the Mormons? well, it is required of missionaries in mexico to go see it whoop whoop so i will be going to go see it in March :)
love you! always do the small and simple things to keep the family safe with the guide of the spirit :)
con amor, Hna Ibarra



Hermana Ibarra and a Sister from the ward

Hermana Ibarra and a sister from the ward
Packing up to move out
Eating Doritos Locos (doritos, shredded carrots, gummy bears, peanuts and chili spice)  sounds pretty weird but tastes great.



I want to sleep!

Week- 46
Area- Tlaxcala, Xicotencatl
Companion- Hermana McBride


Well, this week was one that I will never forget, so many crazy things happened... There are feelings and impressions that one could try to describe to the other, but it would be in vain. I won't try to explain everything that happened to us this weekend, one because it is difficult to put into words and second, you might not even believe me if I told you. Just know that I love you all very dearly and I am so glad you are living worthily to always have the guide of the Holy Spirit. I wanted to cry for joy when you said that you took the time to have a family home evening and that the boys testimonies are growing so much. I thought about your spiritual safety a lot this week. There are unseen forces that will always be working against you all because you know the truthfulness of this gospel but know that those forces with NEVER prevail if you are living worthy and you always heed the guidance of the Holy Spirit. My companion and i could not pray enough thanks this week for all of the miracles we had happen because the spirit guided us to do exactly what we needed to do. Ill be honest, we had a spook with something, but because we were obedient the Holy Ghost led us to safety. Please, I beg you, always continue to have family home evening EVERY week and to pray EVERY day and read the scriptures EVERY day, we cant afford to not have these protections in this fallen world.
This week we were only supposed to have 1 exchange, but we ended up having 2 because of an emergency (which turned out to not really be that much of an emergency, but duty called :) ) Melissa is scheduled to have her baptism this week, but she still needs permission from her mom, so pleeeeeeeeease pray mucho for her. 
I forgot to tell you about something interesting last week. During January after dia de reyes everyone eats "the rosca" which is a special type of bread, suuuper yummy. In this bread there is a little tiny white doll and whoever finds the white doll while they are eating has to make tamales for everyone the 2nd of February. Well, the first time I had the rosca, I ended up with the doll.... the second time I ate it, I ended up with the doll AGAIN, hahahaha. I still haven't made the tamales, but I will be learning one P-Day in the future hahaha. Also on the 2nd of February all the Catholics carry around their images, which are their little baby doll Jesus. it is the creepiest thing ever.... but it was interesting to see what their culture is. 
I got an email from my "email visiting teacher" and I laughed pretty hard hahaha i didnt even know that existed hahaha but she sent me some cute pictures of the activity.
YES I got your box and I loved it, thank you so much :)
We have lots of new investigators that are AWESOME so we are hoping to see some awesome miracles coming soon. I am a little sad because we found out that Hna McBride will be training so this next week is our last week together and we have a feeling that we will close area, but I sure hope not, but the Lords plan is always best, so we will see :)
love you soooo much, remember who you are and what you stand for, make good choices, Jesus loves you and keep striving to be less pathetic ;)
the mission is the best thing to every happen to me, i hope that you boys will make it a top priority to help the missionaries :)
love you! keep up the awesome temple and missionary work
D&C 103:9 (how do you feel knowing that God has given you the opportunity to be a Savior? Are you using this gift?) 
con amor hna ibarra



Tuesday, February 3, 2015

muchos muchos milagros‏


Week- 44
Area- Tlaxcala, Xicotencatl
Companion- Hermana McBride

I dont even know where to start, these past two weeks have just been AMAZING and fuuuuull of miracles. My whole time here with hermana Zarate we had hardly any new investigators and now almost everyone we are teaching are new and AMAZING and ready to be baptized!
This week we only had one exchange because one of the sets of sisters got really sick, so we had to postpone there exchange. 
Tuesday I stayed in the area and worked with hermana D.Lubiano, she is from the same stake as my baby Hermana Herrera and came in the same day she did, it was so much fun working with her and feeling of her great spirit. When I talked to her on the bus she told me that teaching the first lesson was hard for her and i told her "welp, thats great because all of our lessons today are first lessons (which they were jajaja)" and the look on her face was priceless jajaja but she did such an amazing job :) We went to visit a new investigator named Valente and his wife Columba, they are in there 60s or 70s and they are just the cutest things. 
Wednesday we had district meeting (the photo), thursday we had planning session with the assistants, friday we had an AMAZING family home evening with Yulis family and Melissa, SHE WILL BE BAPTIZED IN 2 WEEKS, we are soooo excited! We also found a new investigator that told us that he had had lessons with the elders before, about 2 years ago and ever since they left he has had a huge desire to be baptized.... we were like is this for real!?! We are literally seeing sooo many miracles and we know it is because we are contacting more people in the street. the mission is really struggling with opening their mouths and talking to people in the street, so as sister training leaders we have to show a good example so they can know that it is possible. the "normas de excelencia" are 150 contacts in a week and most of our sisters are hitting around 80 or 100 which is really good, but then others 40 or less, like 16 in a week..... suuuuper sad, so we have made the goal to contact every combi and bus (yeah, a big announcement to over 20 people at once and then talk to each of them as the bus is bouncing around) and so we have been having around 150 to 200 contacts and we are seeing MIRACLES through this faith. 
Sad news, Dante moved to get out of his rough family situation, so he wont be being baptized, it was sad, but he finally looked happy, so i couldnt be down too long.
i think one of the most amazing miracles i have seen here is how much Mexico has relaxed me. Yeah, sometimes there is missionary stress, but i havent fought with my perfectionism for a long time and i think i understand why i had to struggle and get over it my first two changes. Hna McBride is sooooooo hard on herself. It has been an incredible experience to work with her and to teach her to have fun and be gentle with herself, i began to realize, wow, was i like this too? And I know that i was... I feel like i am finally begining to understand the atonement more and how that means I can forget the past and repent quickly and happily so i dont have to beat myself up over every little thing because if i do i am saying that the atonement works for everyone else besides me. I have never felt so loved as i do in this moment, i have never been so happy to repent and to be a daughter of God
i love you all so much, i hope you have a great week, i cant wait to hear about the miracles you will see this week. :)
thank you dad for sending that story about your testimony and the testimony of the elder, the other day i was thinking about your other testimony when you went up to the pulpit and shared your testimony without the microphone, i feel like that every day when i have to shout in a bus to share my testimony :) thank you for your example and for always sharing your stories with me, they really strengthen me :)

con amor, hna ibarra



The District

Birthday Weekend!


Week- 43
Area- Tlaxcala, Xicotencatl
Companion- Hermana McBride



Yes, I feel great, a little sleepy haha but that's because we had 3 exchanges this week! 
I had a great time with Hna Parslow, it was so neat to see how much we have both changed since the MTC days. I also worked with Hna Gonzalez, an american sister from Utah and another Hna Gonzalez from here in Mexico, they both have about 5 months in the mission and they were amazing :) We did have some drama this week, we had to close Loma Florida for some reasons, so we have one less sister companionship :(

so as a sister training leader i am not actually with my companion a whole lot because i am out on splits with other sisters, sooooo my wonderful companion decorated the house for my birthday, made me a cake, got a bunch of the people in the ward to write me letters, and then organized a small get together with one of my converts and some of the youth with 2 more birthday cakes, i was sooooo touched and felt soooo blessed, it was and probably will be the best birthday ever :) 

So much happened I dont even know where to begin....
Monday we had a zone activity, we played futbol and dodgeball and it was soooo hot outside, but it felt really good to get out and play. Tuesday we went out to Libres (middle of nowhere, it reminded me alot of Serdan) to have companionship study and planning session with Hna Parlsow and Hna Vazquez and Hna Gonzalez and Hna Cupul and then I stayed in Libres to work with Hna Parlsow. Wednesday we went to Huamantla to switch companions again and we had our district meeting were we practiced contacting and then I had the day to work here in Apizaco with Hna McBride, and we had an amazing little miracle, hna Angelica, a less active member, walked with us to one of her friends house and so now we have 2 new investigators. Thursday we went out to Chiautempan, Hna McBrides old area to go to companion study and planning session with Hna Gonzalez and Hna Corral and Hna McBride stayed in Chiautempan with Hna Corral (her former companion) and I came back to Apizaco with Hna Gonzalez. Friday we all met up in Apizaco and then we headed out for Libres again to work with Hna Gonzalez and Hna Cupul. I stayed in Libres again and then on Saturday we met up in Huamantla to make the switch then got back to Apizaco for planning session and cake and party and we made  a suuuuuuuper yummy lasagna, im starting to get good at cooking haha and then Sunday we were running around a bit helping some sisters with some things. Melissa came again and we are super excited for her baptism in a few weeks. we still have heard hardly anything from Dante, please keep praying for him, but we are really excited about the 2 new investigators and also 2 more :)

love you all so much, I haven't received your package yet, but I'm sure it will come soon.
I read an AMAZING talk this week that you MUST read, or at least Sarah, it was a world wide conference talk given this month for young single adults at ByUi, here is a link with the information, you will have to find the actual talk


con amor hna ibarra



Hermana Ibarra and Hermana McBride

Marissa at a birthday party thrown for her by some new members and Melissa who is getting baptized next week.

Marissa and Hermana Parslow (Marissa's MTC companion)  Marissa got to spend the day with her on splits.