Monday, December 7, 2009


First Baptism! Daniel Laguna!
Hermana Miranda (stake YW President), Daniel
Gabi, Shauna, Mirtha, H. Casteneda

"Well, Daniel was baptized on Friday night! It was awesome! It was such a neat experience to help teach him, prepare him for baptism and now he´s a member! I can´t express how I felt watching him come up from the water and then being confirmed yesterday in church! His wife and daughter..who I love...are members as of about 8 now their family is complete! Funny thing...his baptism was planned for 7pm on Friday but didn´t start til about 8 cuz everyone was late! As usual! ha. Okay, and the sister who was supposed to talk and one of the counselors in the bishopric who was supposed to share his testimony as part of the program didn´t even show up! Weird! I ended up having to play the piano for the special musical number...eekk...two little girls sang that ´When I Am Baptized´song. Despite all the last minute changes and crazyness it was great and I am so happy for Daniel!!"

"Also...last Tuesday was Zone Conference! Loved it!! There were 3 zones there at the mission office....which by the way is in a way nice part of Asuncion...I´m def in a more poor part for sure! There were 52 missionaries there, 4 of us hermanas. Elder Short from my MTC district was there and I seriously was so happy to see him! I just wanted to give him a huge hug...but a handshake had to do! He said my accent had changed which made me laugh! Guess i´m not a 150% valley girl speaking spanglish like I was at the MTC anymore! Haha!

First at ZC, Elder Petersen and his wife, from Utah, talked to us about our health. He is in charge of 14 missions in South America...crazy! He mostly just said drink lots of water, don´t eat any meat thats been sitting out for a while, etc, etc..kinda common sense type things. After that, two elders spoke and then Sister Callan. (all of this was in Spanish besides one of the elders talks cuz he´s a native so he had to speak in English!) Anyways...her talk was way good and afterwards we all sang Jesus the Christ...LOVE that song. The Spirit was so strong! It was awesome! President Callan then spoke. The whole morning at conference I was able to understand so clearly and take good notes. It was def a tender mercy from the Lord because I really wanted to and had been praying to have the ability to understand and learn at the conference. His talk was really good as well, I like him a lot. He kept referring to how what we are doing now is helping people here in Paraguay and building strong families and how it is also preparing us for our own families in the future. He then led a really good discussion on how the Book of Mormon is the keystone to our religion! After that, we had a testimony meeting. I had the opportunity to share mine. I was probably the worse Spanish speaker in the whole room but with help from my Heavenly Father I was able to express my thoughts and feelings! After that, we had a big lunch and then for a couple hours we did practices and had classes with the different zone leaders in charge. It was kinda frusturating in the afternoon cuz it was seriously like a light switch turned off....I couldn´t understand well at all! Spanish is very humbling. ugh!! We didn´t have interviews with President Callan....I guess one day this week or next he´ll come to our chapel or something. Not sure! Transfers are next Wednesday, the 16th...but I don´t think I´ll be changed. It seems like everyone is with their trainer for 2 transfers. Anyways....I´m really grateful for Pres and Sis Callan. They are seriously soo busy and do so much for the mission!"

12-01-09 Zone Conference
H. Casteneda, Shauna, H. Valente (Argentina)
H.Lorenzo (El Salvador--she arrived in Asuncion
the same day as Shauna)

"Yesterday after church....HUGE rainstorm. We were walking in water just about to our knees. My skirt was drenched!! It was crazyness."

Rainbow after a big rainstorm!

"Finished the Book of Mormon this past week and started it again this morning. Pres and Sis Callan gave every missionary a new Book of Mormon and challenged us to read it within 3 months marking every reference of the Savior. I think it will really help me focus my thoughts and learn more about the Savior while reading it this way! I´m excited! and I think its cool that every missionary will be doing it in our mission!"

"Okay, I seriously love the members here. Yesterday was testimony meeting and it was so sweet to hear their testimonies. Hermano Caballero shared his testimony of the Book of Mormon and shared with everyone how he can´t read but is grateful for the missionaries who come and read to him (we usually read to him about 3 times a week) and that he is able to fill the Spirit and know of its truth when he hears its words. Its so awesome to hear these new members testify of the gospel! Its moments like that where I forget about the rough times I have every day and am just so BG to be here!!"

12-02-09 Familia Lopez
Shauna, Mirian, Angel and Tanya
"Do you like the NY pic hanging up in their apt?"

"Relief Society craft night. Every Thursday at the chapel
everyone goes and plays soccer, primary kids have an activity,
women cook/crafts, etc. The ward is pretty unified! The sister
in the NYY is the Bishope wife. In the black v-neck shirt is the
RS President."

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