Monday, December 30, 2013

Feliz Navidad Prospero Ano y Felicidad

       Oh family, what a wonderful time it is to be a missionary. Wow. The members of the ward and the other missionaries make this time of year so fun! We had a Specialized Training this past week and it was great! I got to meet all the other Spanish missionaries and we even said "Goodbye" to the missionaries that are leaving after this transfer. It is so funny because that seems like a thousand years away, but I know it will be great! For the last part of our training we split up into our districts and had a competition on who could make the best rap to "Deep in the Heart of Texas." It was so funny!! My Zone Leaders are the best and they rapped theirs. Everyone was cheering and I got it on camera! For the end of the training, we got to watch a movie. Missionaries are allowed to watch one movie for Christmas so we all watched Ice Age! My Mission President is the best, and he really pushes for excellence. It is amazing how he can really lift your spirits and make you excited for missionary work. It is sad that he will finish in June, and we will get a new Mission President but I am sure he will be great as well.
For service this week we sang carols with about 18 other missionaries from the English Zone and then our Spanish District! It was so fun, they appreciated us and they were singing along and dancing! This is such a fun time of year. We also tried to stop by a less active family in our area and see how they were doing and it turns out that the mom just had surgery and no one knew about it. So Hermana Vigil and I went in and cleaned her dishes and then we noticed that the Christmas Tree wasn't set up or decorated, so we asked if we could help. We were able to make this tree beautiful with the help of the 7 year old and the 4 year old and we listened to "Feliz Navidad" for a solid hour! It was so fun, the little boys were screaming the lyrics at the top of their lungs and we were laughing. The funny part was that they only knew the Spanish part of the song and then they mumbled the English. We were laughing and having a great time. We were also able to find a member in the ward to come and give Hermana Hernandez a blessing after her surgery. It was a great way to serve another family and also lift our spirits after we had been knocking for hours.
I got to go on exchanges with the Sister Training Leaders on Thursday night and that was fun. I got to go into Garland Texas and it is very different from my area. There are so many Hispanics and we taught so many lessons in 24 hours. I got to go with Hermana Ostler and I got to learn some new ways to teach lessons and to better my Spanish. Hermana Ostler is fluent so she helped a lot. It is very different seeing different areas, but I know that I am in Lewisville for a reason and there are specific people that I need to meet, even if there isn't a ton of Hispanics here!! Speaking of people I needed to meet, the Reyes family is amazing. They are the best investigators and we taught them this week. Hermana Reyes is just broken and needs people to lift her spirits so they sang "Abide with Me 'tis Even Tide" during the lesson and she was just balling. We have set a date for their baptism and it is a goal that we are working towards. They aren't married to we will have to throw a wedding for them, which is going to be so fun, but it is just great to see a family that is so open to the gospel. I will keep updating you guys on this family. Yesterday they came to church and we didn't even have to ask them. It was amazing, a Christmas miracle!
Yesterday, we had the Christmas program in the ward and the Missionaries got to sing in sacrament meeting. There were kids that were playing the flute and saxophone and it was just a wonderful meeting. We had the ward Christmas party on Saturday night and it was some nice Americanized food but also some tamales! Hispanics can cook really well and they love to be in the kitchen so I know that this week is going to be filled with some amazing food!! We are going to a family in our wards our for Christmas Eve to Celebrate "La Noche Buena" which is what they call Christmas Eve. They always make tamales for this event, so I am so excited. The family that we are eating with is so funny and they are just great company. Hispanics really don't celebrate Christmas Day so we are going to the Boyd's house in the morning to open presents and have a Christmas Breakfast and then for Christmas Dinner we are going to another family in our wards house named the Beards. They are a wonderful family of 8 kids, and she is for Puerto Rico and he served his mission there so that is how they met, so they are very Americanized. It is going to be an amazing Christmas and one that I will never forget!
I hope everyone has an amazing Christmas and spends it with the people that they love. Make tons of memories and eat good food! Also remember the true meaning of Christmas. Read Luke 2 and act it out, I think we are going to do that with the Boyd family, I am so excited! I hope you have a fabulous holiday season!
Feliz Navidad!
Hermana Cattich


Family! This week was just amazing! (I know I say that every week but the mission just keeps getting better!) We saw so many miracles and made so many memories. Christmas on the mission is amazing! It is a blessing to be able to work and see miracles on "La Noche Buena" and Christmas Day.

Our Investigators!

Reyes Family: I have told you guys about them before with the dad from Ecuador that was baptized and then fell away from the church. We have a baptismal date for them to be January 26! We had the Law of Chastity talk with them because they are not married and they are praying about a date. They are most likely going to get married around the 18th of January in the church by the Bishop! I am so excited for them. Their whole family is planning on getting baptized and then in a year if they decide then they can go through the temple. We are so excited for this family and the wife who is very receptive to our messages. We pray for them every night that they will have the courage to act on their faith and continue to work towards their baptism date!

Putz Family: This family is wonderful. We received a referral from a Ward Mission Leader in another city and we stopped by them last Monday. We taught them and they were so eager to have us return. They told us that they had been expecting us. We went back and the mom told us that she had read in the Book of Mormon the Introduction and even more. She was so excited. This family is from Monterrey, Mexico and they have 3 boys. We asked them if they had plans for "La Noche Buena" and they didn't so we invited them to a party of some of the members in our ward. The members were wonderful to them, it was such an answer to our prayers. We had to leave the party at 8:30 but they ended up staying until 10. It was a Christmas miracle. We have a baptismal date for this family too and it is also January 26th. We are so excited for them. They love having us over and learning more. Tonight we are teaching them the Plan of Salvation at a members house for Family Home Evening or Noche de Hogar, so fingers crossed that it will go well!!

We met another couple named Antonia and Martin. They keep having us come back to teach them more but they don't talk much so we are working with them. The Lord really has prepared this part of his vineyard. We find so many miracles everyday and I know that I am supposed to meet every single person that I do. Hermana Vigil and I pray everyday for our investigators and to find success. I am so lucky to be a missionary.

Christmas was wonderful. For "La Noche Buena" we went to some members house and ate Tamales which is a Christmas Eve tradition. They were spicy but it was still good food. We were able to eat with some Spanish Elders too so that was fun! On Christmas morning we went to the Boyd's and opened Christmas presents and stockings with the whole family and the English Elders. Then we were able to Skype our families. That was the best! After, President asked us to work on Christmas Day, so in the afternoon that is what we did. We didn't teach any lessons but we set up some appointments. We ended the night at another family from our wards house for Christmas dinner. This Christmas was a Christmas to remember. We saw miracles with the Putz family and we were able to enjoy the good company. I am excited to have one more Christmas out here!

The other Hermanas, Hermana Lebaron and Maxfield got kicked out of their house for a few days because the members that they are living with are having company, so they are living at our apartment. We will all be able to celebrate new years with us. They are living in our dinning room right now with some mattresses. It is so fun and we laugh a lot!

I hope everyone had a good Christmas filled with great memories. I love you all and I am so thankful to have your support. Best of luck for the New Year. This is the year of my mission :) I am so excited to spend the whole next year in Dallas, Texas!

Much love,
Hermana Cattich


p.s The subject for this is "Me encanta los frijoles" because last night this is what I said in my sleep. It means I LOVE BEANS!! Which is not true in any way but hey I am dreaming in Spanish!!! WOOOHOOO

Monday, December 9, 2013

Let it ICE, let it ICE, let it ICE (December 9, 2013)

Well there is not much to tell you this week considering that we had an ice storm and we have been locked inside for 3 days. We received text messages from the Assistants to not go outside. The Elder's power went out, so we were all rescued by the Boyd's. We had to hike out of our apartment complex and they came to pick us up. It was a nice little adventure. Everywhere has been an ice rink and we haven't seen the sun in 5 days. The ice was crazy but the Boyd's took all of us in and we have been playing games and reading scriptures. The Boyd's are great!
Church was cancelled yesterday so we went out and knocked a little bit. We taught one lesson but it was just so cold. We try to talk to everyone. People were nicer to us yesterday because it was so cold, some people must think that we are extremely weird for knocking on doors when it is 15 degrees outside, but I just try to keep a smile on my face.

We had transfer calls and drum roll please.......Hermana Vigil and I are staying together for Christmas!! WOOHOO We get the Boyd's for Christmas and we are so excited. The sad thing is that Elder Harms, one of the English Elders, has been transferred. But all will be well.  I wish I had more to talk about this week but all of our lessons had to be cancelled because of the weather. We had zone meeting and we all went out for pizza afterwards. I really do love missionary work and the other missionaries are really an example to me.

I have loved this experience so far in my mission. There has been so many up's and down's, everyday but how I measure success is "going from failure to failure without loosing any enthusiasm."  I have really grown personally. Sometimes I look in the mirror and wonder who I actually am and I just tell myself, "I am a missionary. I am a representative of Jesus Christ." That just brings a smile to my face. My love and my relationship with the Savior has grown as well. I was never super consistent about personal prayers when I was younger, but being out here in the mission field where you only have you, your companion and the Lord, requires you to use prayers and family a lot more. We pray just as a companionship almost 10-15 times a day. When I was back at home and I had a problem I could usually just put in my music and block out the world or I could go do other things to get my mind off my problems but now being out in the mission field, I have to rely on the Lord. My faith has been strengthened and my love for the scriptures grows every day as I study them. This gospel really is amazing.
At the end of the day, I am thankful for my testimony and my family. I don't know where I would be without these things!

 Yo se que el vive mi senor!
I hope you all have a wonderful week and are staying warm!

Love you all.
Hermana Cattich


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

It keeps getting Better and Better!! December 2, 2013

Happy Late Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgivng dinner with family and friends. My Thanksgiving was one I will never forget.
This week I have really been thankful for all the miracles, even though we still did have doors slammed in our face, it was still a really rewarding week! We find more people everyday, even if they don't progress, it is just another way for them to hear about the church.
The family from Ecuador that we found last week, is the best family in the entire world! They are the perfect investigators. We have been teaching them and the mom just wants to learn more and more. The dad was baptized as a member when he was 21, but his family fell away, so we are trying to excite him about religion again. We taught them the Plan of Salvation becuase the mom has had a hard time with her mom that passed away. The Plan of Salvation is the longest lesson that we teach and it is a lot to take in, so I think she was a little overwhelmed. After the lesson, she asked us if we wanted to have lunch with their family. We made these fried banana things, (it wasn't really a banana but it looks like one) and then you eat it with Queso Fresca and hispanic hot chocolate. They use a different type of chocolate, and it tasted a little different but it was all right. The banana thing though was so good! I will have to make them when I get home! By the end of my mission I will be able to know how to make all this amazing food, it will be awesome!!
We then invited this family to church with us on Sunday. We called them Sunday morning and the mom said that they would be there! We were so excited! When I saw them walk into the chapel, I was bouncing off my chair. They brought 2 of their 3 kids and stayed for the first 2 hours of church. It was amazing. In Gospel Principles, they asked the family to introduce themselves. The wife stood up and said, "I am Claura Reyes, and I am so thankful that the missionaries knocked on my door. We love having them in our home." (In spanish of course though) Hermana Vigil and I were so exicted! We have another lesson with them on Tuesday night, so we are excited! It is awesome to see how the gospel changes lives. When we first met this family the wife said that she was missing something in her life, and while we were teaching her, we brought her to tears. You could feel the Holy Ghost there so strong, I almost wanted to cry. This gospel is exactly what this family needed and this is my exact purpose as a missionary!
For Thanksgiving, we ate with the English Elders recent converts and our investigator. It was so fun. There was some spanish food, a kind of soup called Postole (I think) but it was really spicy. They also made Mac-and-Cheese, so that was fun! The family is so nice. Last night we went to their house again, to use the bathroom while we were out knocking, and they invited us to go with the English Elders to the old folks home to visit a member that is living there that could really use the company, so that was fun!
I got to go on exchanges with Hermana Malekamu this week. It was so fun and I got to drive!! WOOHOO!! First time driving in 2.5 months and it was so much fun. I got so spend the night in the city of Dallas and just have the opportunity to work with different missionaries. It was so much fun!! Hermana Malekamu goes home at the end of this transfer. She is such a hard worker and she literally made me talk to every single person that I saw. It was hard to get over those nerves but it was great at the same time!
This morning Sister Boyd, dropped off a little Christmas tree to our apartment with some ornaments and lights that we could get to decorate it! I am so excited because I know that Christmas will be a little hard for me, but I am so excited to be a missionary right now. The work is really moving forward and there are people that want to hear and learn more about the gospel. It is amazing everyday to see the little miracles or the people that we know that we were supposed to meet.
I hope you all have a wonderful week!! Work hard and have fun this holiday season! Also, don't be scared to share the gospel! It is actually really easy and the missionaries always love when members work with them and give us referrals!
Te quierro,
Hermana Cattich

Hola! Soy la Hermana Catita!! November 25th 2013

This week has been great! I don't think I can explain enough how much I love being a missionary. This week I have survived my first Texas thunderstorm, eaten more beans than I ever have in my entire life, attended my first Hispanic baby shower and taught a whole Gospel Principles class in complete Spanish!!
Yesterday was so good! At first, I dreaded church because I can't really communicate with the members, but yesterday was great. My companion and I taught a whole class for recent converts and investigators in complete Espanol. It was so awesome but I was scared out of my mind. After the class, a man came up to me and told me that my Spanish was really good. That was a huge confidence booster. Yesterday, my district had its first baptism. It was interesting because people in Texas make a HUGE deal about cold weather and yesterday there was supposed to be an ice storm, so they decided to have the baptism for the 3rd hour of church. The whole ward watched it. It is such a cool experience to see how the gospel has changed someones life. They are the cutest couple, and they will just do amazing things in this church. Oh and about the weather, there was no ice storm, it is just REALLY cold. On one of the week nights it was pouring rain and there was some crazy thunder and lightening it was so exciting! The Boyds decided to take all of us out to dinner that night because we were soaking wet. My goal is to just smile and sing hymns at every situation because there are so many times where I just want to cry, but it really is all about your attitude!
       After church, we were knocking on doors and people were being rude, as normal, but then we ended up knocking into a family from Ecuador. The dad was baptized into the church but fell away. The man's dad was the Branch President down there. What was interesting is at the beginning he acted like he had never even heard of the church then as the lesson went on, we found out he was just inactive. He could tell us all this stuff about the temple and baptisms, it was really interesting, like how did we not know he was a member at one time. We are going to work with them this week and hopefully baptize the rest of the family and bring him back to activity. He seemed really excited to have us over again, so hopefully we can work with them.

Our investigators are great! The investigator that was jumping off of her seat with excitement couldn't say my last name so she came up with my name as Hermana Catita. Hispanics can't really pronounce the "ch" and the double t's is really hard for them too so they end up saying something really weird but esta bien. I love the little miracles everyday that I see. Even if it is a hard day, there is always something that I can laugh about. Everything is a new experience that is for sure.
My companion and I are eating with one of our investigators for Thanksgiving and her family and the English Elders. We are so excited. I don't know how Americanized it will be, or how many beans I will eat, but Hispanics just want to know that their food is good, so I just have to smile and eat it! We went to a baby shower of a less active lady that is in the English ward but speaks Spanish, so both the English and Spanish missionaries work with her. The English Elders were with us and she had made spaghetti. Well let me just say, that was not Spaghetti!! AT ALL!! That is just another thing where you have to just smile and eat it anyway. My companion laughs at me cause she knows I struggle with the food but the English Elders just chow it down. It is a great experience!
I love missionary work and it is so rewarding. Watching people change because of the gospel is amazing and it strengthens my testimony. Everyday there is something fun to look back on and realize that this day was wonderful! I am so thankful for the opportunity to be a missionary and to have a wonderful family that supports me. I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving, filled with great food and good memories.

Have a great week,
Te quiero,
Hermana Cattich!