Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Hey there!
Well another week has gone. Another crazy week in the life of a missionary in argentina. The transfer is ending this wednesday, which is kind of crazy to me. My comp has now been here for 7 1/2 months so we are pretty positive that she is leaving for another area for the last 2 transfers of her mission. so we will see what happens. Im pretty positive that if she does end up leaving that I am going to get a latin. What do you think? The truth is that I am kind of wanting to get a latin because I know that I will learn the language 10 times faster because I wont be able to speak english. With my comp now we are always speaking english because it is just easier so I am sort of hoping to get a latin so I can learn the language faster but at the same time I am scared for my life because I am afraid that I am not going to be able to communicate anything! ahh but the truth is I am kind of ready for a change. I mean these past two transfers havent been bad but I am def ready for a little change right now.
   Oh man this week was an interesting one. So I have been pretty lucky since I have been here because it hadnt really rained very much and when it would rain it would just be a little during the day or a lot during the middle of the night when we are sleeping so it didnt affect us while working. Well this luck left me and I had a day of pouring rain literally all day this past tuesday. Let me just say that it was quiet an interesting day. I took a picture that I will send but I was just layered in all of my clothes and my rainboots. Let me just say that I am super greatful for all of the clothes that I brought. Well we were walking along the streets on the way to a members house for lunch and I had an experience like the movies. ahhhh. I was walking along with my umbrella and all of a sudden a car drove by through a puddle and the whole puddle just sprayed up on me. yes all of it. the whole left side of my body was soaked. ahh what a fun experience. haha there is nothing more miserable than being wet and cold. but i survived and the rain hasnt been back since then. I just pray that the rain wont come back like that again because working in that is HARD!  everyone is locked in their houses and no one answers their doors for the poor soaking wet missionaries.
   We recently found this man named Juan that we have started teaching and we are super excited! here is the little background story... so a while ago the sisters here recieved a call from our former mission president President Castillo saying he had a reference for us of this 22 year old girl that had a baby. So when I got here we started visiting and teaching her so one day when we were at the house for an appointment her uncle was there so we started talking to him and he was super nice and we started talking to him for a few minutes about our message and gave him a pamplet but he had to leave. so things didnt really work out with this girl because she just wants to party and has no desire to go to church so we had to drop her a while ago. Well about 2 weeks ago we were walking in the streets when a man drove by and waved to us. We couldnt really see who is was and we figured it was some creeper like always but then i stopped and realized it was the girls uncle. Well he then stopped his car and started talking to us. He was asking why we never came back and that he had read the pamplet and thought it was really interesting. so we set up an appt to return and we have been meeting with him ever since. He is super awesome and we see a lot of hope with him. This past weekend there was a huge baptism with every companionship of missionaries in Corrientes Capital (the area i am in) and everyone was supose to have a baptism and they took a huge picture with everyone in white. Well our baptism fell through because the girl didnt recieve her document but Juan was able to go with us and it was awesome! he also came to church with us yesterday and he was a baptism date!! we are super excited and really hope that everything works out with him!! we will see what happens!!
well i am totally out of time and my comp is waiting for me so i better go! love you lots! have a wonderful week! I am working hard and learning lots everyday! things are good! Thanks for everything!!!
love you lots!!!!

hermana Van Wagenen

Friday, July 22, 2011


As I am sitting here at the computer trying to think of some great stories that happened this week nothing is really coming to mind. We had an interesting week. Nothing super great but at the same time it wasnt horrible. For the first time since I have been here we didnt have any investigator in the church which was super sad but there was nothing we could do about it. Somehow all of them had other things they had to do and couldnt go to church. bueno hopefully next week is better! We are actually super happy because recently we have found two different men that we have started to teach that actually seem interested. we talk and teach so many people that arent ever there when we come back so when we find someone that is actually interested it is a stinkin miracle! One guy his name is nestor and we randomly started talking to him one night because he was outside of his house cleaning his motorcycle. We talked to him and then set up an appointment to return a few days later. when we returned he was there and ready to be taught and had lots of questions. He accepted a baptism date and went to church with us the next day. sadly though the past two weeks he hasnt been able to go to church so he lost his baptism date because you have to go to church at least three time before you are baptized. but we are still teaching him and he has a lot of questions but that just shows that he is truly interested. so we will see what will happen but we see a lot of hope with him!! i hope things work out! 
Yesterday we were at a members house to pick up one of their sons to go to a lesson with us. and when the member came out I said hola and shook his hand. and he looked at me and said. WOW! you can say hola! i just looked at him and thought. umm ya im not retarded. he then started going on about how i never talk in front of him so basically he thinks i cant say a word in spanish. well mister if you are going to sit around and make fun of my spanish i dont want to say a word to you. my companion said that he does it to all the missionaries. ya thats super comforting. this is why i get scared to speak spanish because i am afraid that people are going to make fun of how i speak. but whatever i guess it doesnt matter what this guy thinks. i def have a lot of spanish to learn but i think i am progressing a lot. I have  been doing a lot of door contacts and sometimes i have to repeat things like 3 times. people dont understand us very well because apparently we have horrible accents but sometimes we feel like that is better because then they really have to focus and pay attention to the things we are saying and teaching.
Things are well! we are still trying hard to find new investigators who truly want to listen. this is a big struggle here but i know with the lord help we will find those people who are ready to accept our message. i just dont really know where they are yet. as a think about the short amount of time I have been out on my mission i realize all the many things i have learned. My testimony has been strengthened so much for my savior Jesus Christ and how grateful i am to be a member of this church. I also think all of the time how grateful i am to have the family that i have. As we talk to so many people and see so many broken families and just think about my family and how blessed I am. Life is good. The church is true! and I know that this is where I am suppose to be at this time. THere are def a lot of struggles but the lord is blessing and stengthening me in so many ways! Thanks for your letters and support! It is so great to hear from you guys every week. Sounds like you are having a wonderful trip in new york. Cant wait to hear more and see more pics!! love you lots. have a wonderful week!!

mucho amor, 
Hermana Van Wagenen

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


I am happy to say that we had a pretty good week this week. We found quite a bit of new investigators. The most we have found in a week since I have been here. So we are pretty happy about that. As far as whether they are going to let us come back that is a very very good question. Its difficult because many people will let us come into their house the first time but for the appt we set up to come back they are never there! Its frustrating because after 1 lesson no one really understands the important of our message and the truthfulness of the gospel so its frustrating when they wont let us come back. We really want to find people that are ready and want to listen and accept our message but i guess its not going to be that easy huh. I recieved the card that grandma sent this past week. She has put the article from the church news about my new pres in it. That was way fun to see. He and his wife arrived not this past thursday but the thursday before and then this past tuesday they came to our area and we had interviews with them. He seems so awesome. He was super friendly and when I told him I was from fresno he asked about Pres Parker. he seems way awesome and really caring. His wife was way sweet too. We were talking to her while we waited for our interviews. She is super cute and is learning spanish. It made me feel good to be around here because we are both learning. Sometimes its hard to be around a bunch of missionaries who all know spanish fluently. But ya i am super excited about the new president. My companion keeps talking about how loving and caring he is because I think the other president didnt really ask about the missionaries personal lives and families but was more strict and got upset if a missionary had bad numbers. So i think it will be an interesting change from a latin president to an american president. We will see what happens... but I am excited!
    Well remember our investigator Valeria who was suppose to get baptized for the 2 of Julio and everything fell through.. well we havent been able to talk to her for seriously 3 weeks and she hasnt been able to go to church either and we were way to scared to go by her house and her dad takes out an ax on us so we have had no contact with her for 3 weeks and we have been so sad and not known what to do. Well yesterday we were at the church waiting for investigators to show up to church when all of a sudden we see Valeria get out of the car with her two neices ready for church. YOu should have seen the smiles on my companion and my face. We both seriously almost started crying we were so happy. That was a huge miracle for us to see her at church. because with her dad living at home right now i dont think she can have much to do with the church. There is a lot of problems going on at her house so i dont know what is going to happen with her getting baptized but it was a miracle for us to see her at church.
   I probably shouldnt share this last story with you guys because i dont want to scare you but it is a little piece of argentina that i have to share. The other day we had an appt with an investigator and we stopped by a members house to see if one of the sons could go with us to the appt. So the 14 year old son agreed and came with us to the appt. Well as we were walking to the appt a group of 12,13. 14 yr old boys started yelling names at us. like always. we are used to it but from little boys like this it was kind of weird so my comp turns around and asks how old are you, the kid replies 20 then my  comp replies uhh 14. we then continue to walk and arrive at the investigators house. The investigators sister then opens the door and we start talking to her when all of a sudden we hear a lot of yelling and we turn around and notice about 10 or more kids surrounding us and yelling and laughing at us as we are talking to the investigators  sister. umm ya it was super annoying. we then leave not thinking anything of it but how annoying it was. and we were asking the member what they were saying because my comp couldnt understand everything they were saying. he basically told us they were saying horrible things and then said ya it is def a good thing i was with you because those kids for sure would have robbed you. He said here kids start robbing super young like 14. ahhhh scary huh!! now i am kind of scared and paranoid but as long as we are careful im sure we will be fine. and i dont take anything valuable with me throughout the day either. we just have our sciprtures and pamplets so. ya that was my great story from our week. yay! haha life is good. I have found so much joy in reading the Liahonas.I just love reading conference talks and random stories in the Liahona. Well i hope everyone is doing good. love you all.
Hermana Van Wagenen

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


ahh i have pretty much no time to write you today so this is going to be a really short and sweet email this week! we went to wal mart a little bit ago and somehow it took forever and we finally got to the computers and we have about 30 minutes to check email and write so ya.. first of HAPPY 4th of JULY!! i was excited to hear that the family( well kylie and the parents) haha is in pismo for the 4th. Those are the best memories i have of the fourth. Someone was asking me today what i usually do for the 4th and that is what i always remember. well my comp and i decided to be festive and we are wearing our red, white, and blue. we will have to take pictures. one day i will figure out how to send pictures to you guys! i truly havent taken a lot of pictures because its dangerous to have our cameras with us so i havent taken many. but one day i will send you picture. who knows when. Well i have officially been in argentina for 2 months now! that is kind of crazy. i am getting more and more comfortable with my area and the people. I feel like i know where things are so when my comp leaves and i get a new comp i will be able to show her everything. 
   Every tuesday we have a district meeting and someone always gets up and teaches a doctrine from preach my gospel to the distric for about 10 minutes. Well my wonderful district leader decided to ask me to teach it this past week. ya you can imagine that i was kind of freaking out but i planned it out and got up in front of 2 latins and 4 american missionaries who have been out for over a year and taught a doctrine in spanish. ya it was scary but i did it. man i have to do a lot of things that i really hate doing but i guess i am learning a lot. i always feel like i dont know any spanish but i have to look back at before i started my mission when i literally didnt know anything except like hola and gracias. haha I am def not a fluent spanish speaker but i have learned a lot and more or less am starting to understand the people better. i just need to have the courage to actually speak to the people. i always get scared to speak that they wont understand me but thats how i will learn. this past week we were knocking on tons of doors because we dont have very many investigators right now and most of the doors we were knocking i was the one talking and contacting them. ya SCARY!! and i have started to teach a little bit more during lessons. 
  I was so happy yesterday because for the first time since i have been here in argentina we found a  guy on wednesday and he actually went to church on sunday. most of the time the investigators that we have only taught once are never there when we go back but this guy came to church!! it was a miracle we  have finally found someone that wants to listen to us! we put a date with baptism with him for the 23 of july and he accepted! i hope everything works out and he will truly want to continue to listen and be baptized! our zone set a goal for every companionship in the zone to have a baptism for the 23 of july and they are going to have a baptism together with the whole zone! we are hoping and praying that we will be able to join the rest of our zone and have a baptism for this date too!! well i am running out of time! i am doing well! things are getting better here! we are just working hard and trying to find those people that really want to listen. it is def not easy!
  Man i cant believe all that happened with heather! that does not sound fun! i am glad to hear that everything worked out and she arrived safely and is a trumpeter?!?! haha thats awesome! i am so excited for her that seems like such an amazing experience! and lauren is at efy!! yay hopefully this year everything works out and she doesnt get sick! amy and lauren you guys are really bad writers write me!!!!! i love you anyways though... :) well have a wonderful 4th of july!! and send me more pictures! i like to see pictures of everything! have a wonderful week! love you and miss you! thanks for your support! i have such a wonderful family!!!! 

mucho amor,
Hermana Van wagenen

Sunday, July 10, 2011


Hey there family!
Ya it has gotten so cold here! Like I honestly never expected it to be as cold as it has been. I wear my thick tights, sweater, pea coat and gloves. (thanks to jen I have these fleece lined tight, I cant even tell you how much i love them!! I seriously have been wearing them everyday and my legs are still cold but they are better then anything else) its like there isnt really a middle temperature here its either really really cold or really really hot. i think i might be happier with the cold though I am scared to death for summer when the heat starts to come. oh i realized that i never told dad Happy fathers day!!! it last sunday right? well happy fathers day dad!!! love you
  Sad news... looks like we arent having a baptism this weekend like we thought. ya we are both super disapointed. I dont even know what happened but ever since the last saturday when she told us that she wanted to be baptized she hasnt gone to church the past two sundays and we went over to visit her last tuesday and she told us that we cant come over everyday because her dad comes to the house a lot. he doesnt live there but i guess he visits a lot and apparently he is very against the church and one time a long time ago there were elders at their house and her dad came out with an ax to chase them away... so ya... we are basically not aloud to visit her because she is scared that her dad could show up at any minute. we are so sad because she wants to be baptized we just dont know how to help her because we cant even see her and since she didnt go to church the sunday before her baptism we cant baptize her so we are hoping sometime in the near future she will be able to be baptized. her name is Valeria Meza. pray for her that everything will work out so she can be baptized.
  We have this other girl that we are teaching named Eugenia and she is the daughter of a man in our branch who is the secretary in the district presidency and is very active in the church but his wife and daughter are not members. so we have been visiting with them to try to help them and his daughter really wants to be baptized but she has a son and lives with her boyfriend so she has to get documents and they have to get married so she can be baptized. well since we started teaching her middle of may we have been trying to get her to go to church every single sunday but somehow she always thinks of exuses of why she cant go so we have been super frustrated because we cant baptize her if she doesnt go to church so ths past week we had a lesson with her about the sabbath day and the importance about going to church so she promised us she would go to church on sunday. well sunday comes along and we went out early in the morning to stop by one of our investigators houses to take him to church but no one answered the door so we were really frustrated and sad because we were positive we were going to have no investigators in church and we get to the church and we see Eugenias dad standing right inside the door and he greets us as we walk in and we ask if his daughter came and he said no she didnt wake up so she didnt end up coming. at that point my comp and i turned around to go into sacament meeting when all of a sudden eugenia pops up from the other room. man you should have seen our faces! she was probably scared at how excited we were. haha for us this was a little miracle to finally see her come to church after begging her for weeks and weeks. she ended up being our one investigator at church on sunday. hopefully her documents come and everything works out for her to be baptized the 23 of july.  
    haha i am starting to realize that a mission is full of lots of very awkared moments. we as missionary experience many awkward things but the other day we were at families house that we had just met the week before and taught once and we went back to teach them again and visit them and the daughter told us that the parents werent there but we asked if we could talk to her cousin who lived with them who is 16 years old and she said yes and got her cousin. so we sat down and started talking to the cousin wanting to get to know her a little bit better because she lives with her aunt and their family so my comp started asking about this girls life and kind of about her family when this girl started balling and saying that her mom didnt want her so she abandoned her and the aunt took her in. well the cousin was sitting in the room listening and knew nothing about this so she started crying too and then next thing we knew the crazy grandma runs out and it yelling at us to leave their house now!! all of this personal family stuff came out that we didnt even force them to tell us but apparently the grandma didnt like it so we basically felt horrible after and are scared to ever walk by that house again. that they might murder us. im sure now if they ever see mormon missionaries they might kill them. ahhh ya it was horrible but what do you do..
   Oh i recieved moms letter with the stack of pics of busty. oh my goodness i am obsessed!!! he is so cute!! i have a mural of pics of him hanging up on my wall. haha and i just got a letter that is looks like dad sent me in the mtc of laurens blog. i enjoyed reading that!! keep sending letters. its fun to get real letters too!!! well i better get going. things are good. we are still struggling a lot with finding new investigators we have gotten rid of a lot of investigators so we have very few right now we have been getting rejected a lot but i am sure there is someone here that is ready to listen and accept our message we just havent found that yet. everyone is just very very stuck in there catholic ways and cant change. it is difficult but we just keep working hard. im sure sucess will come.. thanks for the emails and support it is much appreciated. i love you all and am grateful to have such a wonderful strong family in the gospel. have a wonderful week and heather I am so excited for you to go to your pageant! I better get lots a pics updates and i want to hear about everything. yay! how fun! love you all lots!
hermana van wag