Monday, December 28, 2015

A great Christmas week.‏

Family and Friends, 
I hope you've all had an amazing Christmas. I didn't really write that
much last week, but here's a summary of the last two weeks. I've had
some big testimony builders recently. Hermana Maza has been a huge
example to me. Last Wednesday (1 1/2 weeks ago) morning she found out
that her older sister passed away from cancer. Obviously a big trial
to deal with, especially being away from family. We spent a day in the
mission home and by Thursday afternoon were back to work. It was
amazing to see and feel her testimony strengthen even more. I could
feel the Spirit really strong during the lessons we taught the
following days, a few even on the plan of salvation. I know Heavenly
Father gives us trials so we can grow and progress. Sometimes it may
be hard to understand in the moment, but He has a greater plan for us
and knows what we need. 
Another testimony builder happened Christmas Day. I started getting
sick Christmas Eve, and by mid-morning on Christmas I had completely
lost my voice. I was so nervous that I wouldn't be able to talk and
communicate with my family over Skype. One of the elders kindly asked
if I'd like a priesthood blessing. They gave me one, and I was able to
speak with my family. The next day it was gone again besides a faint
whisper. I'm grateful for the tender mercies of my Heavenly Father and
for the restoration of the priesthood on the earth.

As far as Christmas celebrations go, we had a lot of fun. Actually a
small fact first is that people from Spain celebrate 'Día de los Reyes
Magos' - wise men day- the 6th of January more than Christmas. That's
when they open gifts. Christmas is still celebrated, but it's not as
big. We had a Christmas dinner the week before at the church. We ate
and had a talent show. There were a ton of people, many friends and
family of the members. On Christmas Eve, all the missionaries from
Madrid (100+) had an activity. We first had a spiritual devotional
with scriptures and musical numbers and after food, white elephant,
and caroling (singing on the steps of the 'temple square'). That
evening we had Christmas Eve dinner with the Guzmans. Then Christmas
Day we basically visited people and ate with them all day and Skyped
Yesterday we saw a cool miracle. We went to Arganda, one of the
pueblos. On our way back home we past a churrería that a
friend/investigator works at. He called us over and we talked for a
minute. Then his boss came, and the truth is we were a little nervous
because we were not sure if we should be there (we were on the back
side talking while he worked). I looked at Hermana Maza and said,
"should we go?" And she, always in tune with the Spirit, said, "I
think we need to talk to his boss first." So we did. And turns out she
is a member, with almost all her extended family members, but her
immediate family no and has been inactive for over 20 years. She
hasn't owned a Book of Mormon for years and was happy to accept one
and set up a time to meet again. 
I'm really grateful for all the experiences I have. I know our
Heavenly Father has a plan for each of us and we must learn to follow
the Spirit and do what He wants for us. That is what will make us
truly happy and prepare us for the eternities. 
Love you all! Happy New Year! 
Hermana Bingham

With the Guzmáns
With the Martins
Christmas pancake breakfast
Our district
Before Christmas
...and after. Thanks everyone!

Love you all!

Christmas in Arganda

Friday, December 25, 2015


Hola Familia y Amigos! 
Feliz Navidad! Today is my pday instead of this past Monday. The truth
is we have some fun things planned- one Skyping my family soon :) - so
I'm not going to write a whole lot. Just wanted to wish you all a
Merry Christmas and share a quick thought. This week I was reminded of
my Spanglish with the word Christmas. Más in Spanish means more, so
more Christ. :) I've loved focusing even more than normal this
Christmas season on our Savior. I'm grateful for His birth, His life,
His miracles, the establishment of His church, and His Atonement.
Love you all! Hope you have a great Christmas! 
Hermana Bingham 
Christmas selfie with the Guzmáns for Christmas Eve dinner.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Another week has passed‏

Family and friends, 
This week has been a little crazy and stressful. We have a ton of
people to visit, yet we had many lessons fail so didn't meet with many
people. We found many obstacles with the people we actually could meet
with. It's been a week of trials, but sometimes I learn the most
during those weeks. 
We did have a huge blessing this week. We met a lady the other day on
the bus and she gave us her number. When everything Friday morning
failed we called her and she said she could meet right then, and we
were 2 minutes from her house. We taught her The Restoration and she
loved it and asked us to come back the next day to teach her 2 kids.
We did. Her 11-year-old daughter was away living with her aunt for the
summer. Her aunt is a member and the daughter has had almost all the
missionary lessons. They're really cool. 
Even though this week was stressful for me, I've felt the love my
Heavenly Father really strong. I know he knows and loves each one of
us and is aware of our circumstances. I'm looking forward to another
week serving Him here in Madrid. I love you all. Hope your week is
Hermana Bingham 
Pday in Segovia

Monday, December 7, 2015

Christmas lights!

Dear Family and friends,

This has been another busy week. Hermana Maza and I have been very
blessed in having lots of work, and we love it. We taught a really
cool new guy from Cuba this week. He's visiting Cuba for about a month
and a half so won't teach him for awhile but he is prepared. Had a lot
of good questions. Although we were busy all week, it's hard for me to
remember exactly what we've done. Haha. I know we had lessons with
Yonathan and Gerbert (who's keeping all the commandments :) ), the
kids, Leo, a few menos activos, zone training, choir practice,
intercambios (I went to Barrio 2 with Hermana Barkle), and I'm
probably forgetting a few things. A pretty normal, yet still great

Last night there was a Christmas concert in the capilla and they
turned the Christmas lights at the temple on! It's beautiful. And the
concert was beautiful as well, a lot of talent. I love Christmas time. 

Today we also had transfers. Hermana Maza and I are together another
transfer! Three transfers together. We are excited. And have a lot of
work. They closed the other companionship of Hermanas in our area.
We've already been super busy and now are going to have to be even
more efficient in our work to fit in the people the Hermanas were
teaching as well (some to the elders as well). We are excited to work
hard and stay busy. We are also going to miss the other Hermanas a
lot. The piso is going to feel really empty without them. 

Hope you all have a great week! 
Hermana Bingham

A majority of our zone
Giraffe rice with Daniel
Bye to Hermana Birnbaumer and Hermana Berry
Christmas lights at the temple!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Busy Happy Week

Family and friends,
This week was crazy. In a good way. We ran from one thing to the next
all week. Made the week fly by. Wednesday we had a zone meeting with
all the missionaries from Madrid. I love meetings with big groups of
missionaries and our mission president, I always learn a ton. After,
Hermana Pack and the Larsens (senior missionary couple) prepared a
thanksgiving dinner for all of us. Tons of food, I don't know how they
did it. It was delicious. Thursday Hermana Maza had the privilege to
be the escort of her mom in the temple. Her mom recently completed one
year as a member and President Pack gave her permission to go. Which
meant I got to go as well. It was great to get an extra trip to the
temple and meet Hermana Maza's mom. It was a little weird to be with
family of a missionary, but a great experience. Thursday a family from
the ward, the Guzmans, also made a thanksgiving dinner for us. Even
though Thanksgiving is not a holiday here, it was great to be able to
celebrate it with people. The members are so great and take good care
of us! On Friday we had a ward activity and watched Meet the Mormons.
We had a few investigators come that loved it. It's an awesome movie
to introduce some things about our church. On Saturday we went to
teach three kids that we are teaching. They forgot and were having a
going away party for a friend who was moving to Chile. They just
invited all their friends to listen to our message as well. Somehow we
got about 10 kids to listen to us attentively. It was a fun lesson. 
Gerbert and Yonathon are still progressing well. We are all getting
excited for Gerbert's baptism in a few weeks. Also, Hermana Maza and I
were in a picture taking mood this week, so enjoy the millions of
photos. Mostly of food. No, I'm not going hungry. 
Love you all! Hope you enjoyed your Thanksgiving!
Hermana Bingham 
Thanksgiving meal at zone conference
I love Hermana Maza!
Temple with Hermana Maza's mom
Attempt at panoramic at the Guzmans
Fufu with Rosa (recent convert). You eat it with your hands.
Ecuadorian food with Gizella (investigator). and her sister Eliana (member).
A bunch of the kids we taught
African food with Yonathon (investigator). and Diana (member).
Eber and Marie Carmen (members) are leaving to Ecuador for awhile and not sure if we will be here when they return.  Love them so much!
Food with Bishop Palma and his wife Marie Fe

Monday, November 23, 2015

Visit from Elder Christiansen and Elder Dyches‏

Family and Friends, 
It's been a great week. Another week that I've felt so blessed.
Gerbert and Yonathon (found out this week his name is spelt with a Y
not a J) are progressing great and preparing for their baptisms. We've
met with Gerbert almost every day this week. I am really grateful for
the ward and support they are giving them. Yesterday Yonathon said, "I
like church. Normally I would just sit at home and watch movies on
Sunday. Church is way better." I'm excited and grateful for their
progress. The kids that we are teaching are loving the lessons as
well. We taught The Plan of Salvation and I thought we would teach
pretty simple but kids minds are curious and we ended up answering a
lot of questions. I loved it. Every day I am loving the work and the
people here more and more. 
We also has a fireside because two members of the Seventy were here on
Thursday. It was a wonderful experience. We had a meeting first with
only missionaries and later all the wards in Madrid were invited. I
learned a lot and had a lot to ponder after the meetings. Looking at
my notes I had written a ton of questions. Here are a few. Those who
spoke were Elder Christiansen, Sister Christiansen, Elder Dyches,
Sister Dyches, President Pack, and Hermana Pack. 
Questions from fireside:
-What would my response be when I see the Savior? 
-Do I know who I am? What my divine identity is?
-Am I making the small decisions daily that will lead to what my
eternal goals are? 
-When have I seen the empowering power of Christ in my life? 
-Am I asking in prayer to see His hand in my life? To learn more
through personal experiences about the Atonement? 
-Do I know how to not just teach about the Atonement but apply it and
teach how to apply it? 
-Am I putting into action the things I know to be true? (I shouldn't
just know something, but know/feel/and do it!) 
-What can I do between now and Christmas to become more closer to
Christ? What can I offer Him? How can I become more like Him? 
-What will I do now to strengthen my testimony and become more
committed to the gospel of Jesus Christ so that I can have a
multigenerational, strong, happy family in the church (like Alma in
Book of Mormon)? 
-What is the importance of the temple to me? Why do I "love to see
(and enter) the temple"?

It was a wonderful spirit-filled day. 
I challenge you all to ponder
these questions as well. Thanks for all the love and support. Hope you
all enjoy Thanksgiving this week! I wanted to make a few pies so
searched in multiple stores during pday today for pie pans... They
don't exist and couldn't even find anything to use as a substitute.
Sad. But it's all good. You'll have to eat some pie for me! :) Love
you all! 
Hermana Bingham 
My companion was lucky enough to get a photo with Elder and Sister Christiansen. 
Herman's of barrio 8 with the girls of the Tellez Family

Monday, November 16, 2015

I love being a missionary‏

Dear family and friends,

This week was an amazing week to be a missionary. I love looking back
and seeing the importance of pushing through the hard times or weeks
then see the miracles and blessings in abundance after the trial. One
of our investigators, Leo, has been an investigator my entire time
here in Barrio 8. We've really struggled with a few things in his
teachings. Tuesday we were teaching him and a lady from barrio 6
walked by us - only because she had something bothering her in her eye
so she was going to use the bathroom in the church before going in to
the temple. She saw us, knows Leo as well, and thought 'do I stay and
help or go fix my eye?'. She stayed. And was a huge help. After we
talked about what we each felt we could do to help Leo, and we were
all on the same page. I love the Spirit. She also had some references
of people in our area to pass by. Later that day we had time so we
passed by one family. We didn't know a whole lot, just they had been
to English class a long time ago. We had to take the bus pretty far,
took awhile to find, the light in the building wasn't working and was
a little sketch, but we made it. Turns out the grandma of these kids
is a member of our ward. The kids are 8,10, and 11 and precious. They
just wanted to read the Book of Mormon even though they knew nothing.
So we explained it and read some and gave them each a copy. A few days
later we went back and they had read quite a bit. They had a friend
over and we're sharing everything they had learned with her. One of
the girls said, "if you want to know if the book is true, you have to
read from right HERE. the beginning". I love teaching kids, they have
lots of faith and just say what they think. 

We also met with our investigator Jonathan. He has no religious
background so the teaching has been little by little. He didn't know
much about Jesus at all, never heard words like atonement, faith,
baptism. I've loved teaching him though because he has real desire to
learn and know. This week he accepted to be baptized. January 9th.
Seems forever away. Next year. But will come fast and is perfect for
him. Gerbert also accepted to be baptized the 19th of December. We had
a few investigators and some of the less actives we've been working
with at church yesterday and it made my day. It's been a great, busy
week full of miracles. These were just some highlights. I'm so
grateful to be a missionary and be a really small part of the Lord's

Love you all! Hope it's been a great week! 
Hermana Bingham 
I met Hermana Koivisto this week. She knew me because my blog is her
mom's favorite. Haha. So this photo is for Hermana Koivisto's mom. :) 
We went to Parque Europa today.  There's a bunch of mini versions of famous places around Europe.  The truth is I enjoyed the beautiful green grass, trees, and nature probably more than the sites.  But it was cool.
No I don't really get to knock on dramatic doors like this.
We made it to Paris!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Sickness... But we continue to be blessed‏

Friends and Family,

This week was a week of health trials, but as always was still full of
blessings and miracles. Last Sunday I had major jaw pain that lasted
about 4 days, and is finally feeling almost back to normal (maybe
TMJ... We don't know for sure). This weekend all 6 missionaries
serving in my ward had upset stomachs and fevers- flu. I'm the only
one that hasn't actually thrown up out of the 6... Knock on wood.
Being sick as a missionary is not fun. Thankfully it hasn't affect our
work too much. 

As missionaries we are always asking people if they know anyone that
could benefit from the message we share with them. This week we found
three new, awesome people this way. One is Gisella, the sister of a
member. She's received all the lessons before and already has a
testimony of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith.
The other is Mildrey, the friend of a member who just moved here. We
had a great lesson with her and she's excited to learn more. The other
is Juan Carlos, the friend of our investigator Jonathon. Juan Carlos
came to church (Jonathon invited him) and wants to learn more. He
actually lives in another ward so other missionaries are going to
teach him. He's really awesome and prepared. I'm excited to hear about
his progress. 

This week was also transfers, but nothing too new. All the Hermanas in
barrio 8 are staying! Elder Lattronico is going home and Elder
Wiltbank will train. I'm really happy to get to be companions with
Hermana Maza again! We are going to have a great transfer. Hope you
all have a great week! Love you all!

Hermana Bingham 

I love Spain.