Wednesday, March 23, 2016

14 months

Family and friends! 
It's been kinda a crazy week. Let's start at the beginning. Monday
night Hermana Hill and I met with a member I didn't know too well. She
is great and even has ideas of some youth we can meet with and help
out. It will be great. She's also big into outdoorsy stuff so will
hopefully be able to take us hiking on a pday soon! Tuesday morning we
also met with another lady from the ward with Hermana Bake. We talked
about Easter and the role of Christ in our personal lives. The Spirit
was definitely guiding the lesson and it went great (normally does
when we let the Spirit teach :) ). Tuesday afternoon we had an
adventure taking a 'shortcut' to our lesson that our maps app told us
which ended up basically going over a mini mountain. Okay, that's an
exaggeration, but it was crazy steep and long, not shorter.
Unfortunately we made it to be failed, but ran into a different
investigator soon after and we think finally got the importance of
praying from our heart not a recitation. Fun fact that a lady on the
street told us (so not sure if it's actually true..) is that Santiago
is the second largest Catholic city in Europe, next to Rome. 
Wednesday another adventure of the week started. The morning was
normal. Had a good lesson with a progressing investigator then
district meeting. Both went well. Then I headed off in train to Madrid
to renew my residency card. Got there around 9 and stayed with
Hermanas Olsen and Spencer, who I love. Thursday morning we went to
renew the card but the office elders were missing a paper they though
they had so I went to a different government building then back to the
other. It took longer and I missed my train to go home. My options
were wait until Monday (next available train) or a 9 hour bus ride to
Vigo on Friday then another two hours to Santiago. I chose the bus. It
was kinda sad because I felt like I missed out on real missionary work
for basically half the week, but it was important to take care of. 
On Saturday we were back to work. We met with one of our
investigator's mom and had a great conversation about our role in her
daughter's life. We keep praying that one day the mom will be open to
hearing this wonderful message as well. It would be a huge blessing
for the whole family.
We have met with more members this week and it is helping he attitude
of missionary work here and our relationships with them. Yesterday at
church we had 43 members! A record in quite a while. 
This week is semana Santa in Spain, basically like Easter week. There
will probably be some fun celebrations. It's also been great having an
emphasis in my studies of Christ's life and His resurrection. I know
He lives. And I know we can all find peace through His atonement.

Hope you all have a great week! 
Hermana Bingham 
Didn't take photos this week... But here's one of my view while
emailing on the Bake's porch.
Awkward Santiago family photo
Sugar cookie contest pday

Monday, March 14, 2016

Amazing, Fun week in Santiago‏

Family and Friends, 
What an amazing, miracle-filled, productive, fun week it has been.
Hermana Hill and I have had a great first week together. The week
before I really felt like things were starting to pick up in the work
here, and it took off. We have met more new friends that are
interested in the gospel this week than any other. Hermana Hill wanted
to meet all the members so we met with many of them, which
strengthened our relationship with each one. It was awesome. And, the
sun has shined the past few days, and I'm loving it! 
We met with an investigator who has been visiting home in Mexico for
the past few months, but is back. He actually called us when he
returned to Spain. We had a great, powerful lesson and he is excited
to prepare for baptism. We also met with a member's cousin again, it
had been awhile since we had met with schedules and the distance she
lives. She has great questions that help us think and be able to
explain the gospel in the simple, pure manner that it is. 
On Friday night we had a relief society dinner and talent show. They
wanted Hermana Hill and I to perform, so with the little time we had
we went to a member's house, cut a few songs, and danced. Had maybe 20
minutes to practice, but it was super fun. There were a handful of
sisters that don't usually come to church that were there, it was
great talking to them. The show and dinner were nice. 
Saturday was the YW New Beginnings that we went to. A very small YW
program but they gave wonderful short talks about their experiences.
After, we went to a basketball game. Tyler Haws, former BYU basketball
player, is our branch mission leader. Our mission president gave us
permission to go to a game if we brought a friend with us, and got
tickets for his family, who happened to be in the north this weekend.
So the Packs, elders, Bakes (senior couple), José and Jonathan
(friends from ward) all went. It was a little weird, had a taste of
'real life' and I felt strange just sitting watching a game for so
long (double overtime), but we had a lot of fun! 
The missionary work here is improving little by little. I love Hermana
Hill and am already becoming a better missionary by following her
example. I'm very grateful to be here in Santiago. 
Love you all! 
Hermana Bingham 
It was time.
Sneak peak of RS talent show
And the dinner
Great sunny pday
#2 - my branch mission leader

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Staying in Santiago‏

Family and Friends, 

This week has been another great one. This week I could feel the excitement of the missionary work grow, and our faith. We have worked on finding new people, trying to get creative my whole time here. When you're in that stage for a few weeks and nothing new comes it can be hard. This week all 4 of us here in Santiago had many ideas, our Spirits and faith were a lot increased, and although I can't say we all have new people, we can feel it coming. There's been a lot more excitement, energy, willingness to really share the gospel with everyone. 

Hermana Iregui and I did have a good lesson with Antón. He read a lot in the Book of Mormon and we basically discussed his questions about that, what he'd learned, how he feels, etc. We taught something completely different than what was planned and I felt the Spirit there guiding us. 
We had district conference (like stake conference but for the branches) yesterday. Elder Adler from the Seventy was here along with President Pack(mission president) and his wife. It was a great meeting and reminder of the importance of the 'little things'- daily scripture study and prayer, building our own personal testimonies, going to the temple, loving your neighbor, etc. 

This transfer was a short one so we already had transfers today. Hermana Iregui left to Guadalajara, Madrid. My new companion is Hermana Hill. She's from Missouri and great. We have served in the same district previously and finish the mission at the same time. I'm going to miss Hermana Iregui but am also excited for this transfer. 

I hope you all have a great week! Love you! 

Hermana Bingham 

Santiago district
Bye to Hermana Iregui
We went to the "end of the world" today.  A long time ago people thought the earth ended here, no more land. Pioneers also burn their shoes here after their long journey there.  There's probably a lot more history about it that I don't know.  It was FREEZING.  Super windy and cold, but really pretty.