Monday, May 26, 2014

The Easter Bunny is Real and He is from Honduras! - April 21, 2014
Hola Everyone!
Wow!  I absolutely loved your Easter pictures that you sent.  Those were so darling.  I´m so glad Mark and Darren and their families could go spend Easter with you people in Utah.  That is super fun!  

Happy Easter Greeting from the Johnson Family to Hermana Johnson
I would´ve given a thousand limpiras to have cheesy potatoes for Easter.  Here normally the food is pretty alright.  I love baleadas, and pollo con tajadas and tortillas con quesillo with chimole (it´s like a quesadilla with salsa) but the traditional food of Semana Santa is just not wonderful.  People buy these big salty dried fish... they´ve been sitting out to dry for MONTHS, and then they roll it in the same type of mixture that one would use for tamales and they put it in a soup.  Normally I eat everything no matter what.  I am a very dedicated missionary so I almost ate the whole thing, just a little bit fell to some nearby chickens that saved me.  Then for dessert they cook pumpkins in honey which doesn't sound good but that was actually pretty good.   

Also I don´t recall if I already told you about Gringo?  We have a big white rabbit that started visiting our house the week of Easter and his name is Gringo ha ha ha.  He comes every single night to chill out in our back yard around 9, and he´ll sneak up right next to you if you´re real quiet.  So yes the Easter Bunny is actually from Honduras if you wanted to know!!
Also you should know that your Easter package arrived here safe and sound.  This morning we made hard boiled eggs so when we get back home today we´ll go paint and decorate them and celebrate Easter even though it has already passed.   Also tell Rhonda that her family´s package got here safe and sound.  Tell her thanks so very much and if you could please send me her address so I can write a thank you.  

Hermanas Johnson and Mejia coloring Easter eggs
Other things I forgot to tell you... number one I think you people were planning on putting together  a book of all my letters and photos for when I get home... or if not I would like you to do so ha ha ha but I want not just my letters I´ve sent to you, but if possible the letters you have written to me as well... what do you think of that?  Then it will be a giant journal of our whole family and friends and what happened for that year and a half.

 I loved all the photos you sent in your card, and I read your article about Amanda Smith who´s serving in the Philippines that you sent.  Yes I do know her and that was a pretty crazy story.  I feel pretty darn lucky to be where I am after hearing that scary story.  I can´t even imagine how that would be.  

I love that Hermanas Mejia and Gardner get to be with us right now.  I´m so happy to be with Hermana Gardner.  Very few people get to go around with their MTC companion and one of their best buddies in the mission like I do.  We even  talked all about our MTC days with one of the young men in the ward who is getting ready to turn his papers in yesterday and I just was so happy to be there.  

Yesterday was just a really awesome day.  We were sitting in Sacrament Meeting when we got the massive surprise that one of our investigators came to church.  I was so completely shocked.  Her older son  has been a member since October, but her younger son has wanted to get baptized for months and she just hasn´t wanted to give her permission.  She allows us to visit but she made it clear that she herself respects our religion but is Catholic.  My goodness it was so beautiful to have her there and she loved it!  She told us later that her son  had invited her to go to church with him that day, and she didn´t want to go but she said she was just sitting thinking and said a prayer that if it was God´s will that she go to church He would remove all obstacles from her path and make it easy for it to happen.  And that´s how it happened.  She finished making breakfast faster than normal. She wasn´t dressed when her son passed by to bring her, and she said he loves to be punctual and gets super frustrated when other people make him late.  But even though she wasn´t ready, he said mom take your time, and everything just passed smooth as a whistle so she went to church and felt like God wanted her to be there.  Now she says I never thought in all my days that members of my family would go to the Mormon Church, but I´ve seen a grand change in my two sons and I am forever grateful for that.  I thank God every day for the positive changes I´ve seen in my family, and I thought I´d always be Catholic but now who knows if one day I´ll be Mormon too but I loved going to church today, and now my daughter wants to go with me to church next week too.  She loved it!!!!!! I was just so, so happy she came and so very shocked, but she came!!! Wow,  it was wonderful!  Tons of missionaries have visited her and finally as time has passed God has been preparing her heart and now she is finally ready to take it all in.  She says she wants us to teach her now all we know so she can feel the change in her heart that her sons have felt.  

Also we went to visit the son of one of the members because he suddenly changed his mind this past week that he just didn´t want to go on a mission anymore.  We were so shocked and worried.  I think he was feeling like he just wasn´t good enough to be a missionary.  He didn´t want to visit with us or go to church or even talk to us anymore.  But Hermana Gardner and I went just to talk to him and see what was on his mind and after just talking about whatever for a while he finally opened up that he felt like he really couldn´t do it and that he was worried his family couldn't really afford for him to go so he wanted to work to help out his dad pay for everything in place of going on a mission, and we just bore our testimonies and talked about how the mission has changed us for the better and that one´s family is more blessed as one is in the mission than any other place so he need not worry. He finally stopped worrying and said he wanted to go.  He´s going to pray a lot and read in the scriptures. I  know he´ll do it and I hope I can be here the day his call comes because he´d really be a wonderful missionary.   The mission will really change his life for the better and give him the strength and confidence he needs to conquer whatever challenges come his way.  We were just floating on cloud 9 as we left that visit.  We spent like an hour and a half just talking to him trying to figure things out and help him make a good decision, and we felt like in the end he really would do it.  And if we can help just one person come unto the gospel or make the decision to serve a mission, we have had great success and great joy as we can think of how many hundreds of people they can help come unto Christ.

Thanks for letting me know that my letters arrived at last.  I love you all a ton!  Here´s wishing you a wonderful Easter!  Thanks for all your love and support, I can feel it so strong every day.  

Love, Hermana Johnson   

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