Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Chula Vista - Week #47 - Mar 25, 2014

I want to be an Olympian someday...

Mi familia!

Cool week! My district and I just got back from touring the biggest Olympic Training Center in the U.S. (there are only 3 in the U.S.) and it is right here in Chula Vista. It was SO COOL!!! We had a tour guide who took us around to all the different training fields/gyms and we even got to meet several Olympic athletes! Hermana Pendleton's uncle is the head coach for the Track/field teams so we got a VIP tour down on the track. Go look it up on google if you get the chance. If anyone comes to Chula Vista, you have to take a tour of the Olympic Training Center--highly recommended.

Jose is still progressing really well. He is so solid. I forgot to tell you last week, but after Fireside, he told us that during our special musical number, the spirit testified to him so strongly and so clearly that everything he had been learning was true! So awesome!! He is super excited for his baptism on April 12th. Please pray for him!

The ward has been doing a great job at welcoming Ivette and Freshte into the ward after being baptized. The Romero family invited them over for Sunday dinner, along with Ivette's non-member boyfriend. So instead of having a member-present lesson, we had a "many-members-present lesson." because Ivette and Freshte are now members. Super cool! The efforts of the ward are really making a big difference. I love all the members here. They are incredible member missionaries.

Les quiero! Que tengan una semana muy buena!

Hermana Barnes

1) Me, Hna. Capareda, and some cute lil' Hispanas
2) Many-members present lesson/dinner
3) District on the tour
4) Barnes for Bronze!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Chula Vista - Week #46 - Mar 18, 2014

Ivette and Freshte's baptism! Stop hiding your talents...

Hola familia!
This. week. was. CRAZY!!!  IVETTE AND FRESHTE GOT BAPTIZED!!! WAHOO!!!! HAPPIEST DAY EVER. It was an awesome baptism and it was a full house a well. Our mission president, President Clayton, and his wife even came. Ivette and Freshte were so happy and peaceful. They both bore their testimonies at the end and brought the spirit so strong. I love them!!
Guess what family... you're not going to believe this. But I sang a solo in front of hundreds of people on Sunday at the Mission President's fireside... Scariest thing of my LIFE!! Where did that come from?! Finally, after 20 years of ignoring all of you who told me to stop hiding my voice, I did it. It really was a testimony builder for me to see that when you get the courage to share your talents, Heavenly Father really does strengthen you and bless you with more. Hermana Capareda and I did a duet to "Asombro me da" (I Stand All Amazed) and we each had long solos. I still can't believe I actually agreed to do it. What?! I was able to perform in two other musical numbers that night as well, one of them I accompanied Sister Hess on the piano, and the other one I sang the alto part in "Senor, te necesito" (I Need Thee Every Hour) with Hermana McBride on the ukele and two other Elders. Manuel, our recent convert, was selected to be one of the speakers at the fireside as well. The spirit was super strong! A bunch of members from my first area, Ramona, even came to the fireside. Ahh! My heart! It was such a stinkin' cool night. Moral of the story: If you have a talent you are hiding, STOP THAT. SHARE THAT. I can finally say that without being so hypocritical.
I'm out of time, but I love you!! Go make someone smile! Have a wonderful week!
Hermana Barnes
1) Beautiful baptism
2) The amazing Hermana Coca gave us lunch boxes so we could eat lunch in between meetings at church because we pretty much live there on Sundays. How cool is she?! Super cool.
3) Me, Hermana McBride, and the newest members of the church right after their baptism :) I love those ladies so much.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Chula Vista - Week #45 - Mar 11, 2014

Jose volunteers as tribute

Hola familia!
WHAT A WEEK! WAHOO!!! Ivette and Freshte are getting baptized this Saturday!!! And Jose is getting baptized two weeks after that! Our area is on FIRE!!!
Craziest Sunday of my life happened two days ago:
Jose doesn't have transportation to get to church, so we set everything up so he'd be good to go. Manuel and the Romeros stopped by his house to pick him up and the gate was locked and Jose was no where to be found! They tried screaming his name but he wouldn't come to the gate so they left. Jose forgot it was daylight savings!! NOO!!! We were heart-broken. We knew that if Jose wanted to get baptized on the 29th, he would have to come to church 3 weeks in a row. Anyway, during all of this, Ivette and Freshte were having their baptismal interviews in the church right before church was about to start so that was another thing we were running around with our heads cut off for. Hermano Silva, who is rock star member missionary, agreed to go try again to pick Jose up who lived 20 minutes away from the church. We hopped in our car, Hermano Silva hopped in his car, and off we were on a trek to find Jose. We got to his junkyard and the gate was still closed. So we lost 20 pounds for 3 seconds and miraculously squeezed through the gate and right as we ran up to his trailer, there he was, all ready to go with his white shirt and combed hair. I swear I could hear the "Hallelujah" chorus somehwere. I felt true happiness. We jumped in the car and sped back to the church as fast as we could. We were tarde, pero seguro. *SIGH.* Five million more things happened on Sunday, including Ivette and Freshte passing their baptismal interviews (Wahoo!)! Going to church is important people! All that stress wasn't for nothing!
Moment I will never forget: We had a lesson with Jose with Manuel last night on the Plan of Salvation and at the end we asked him to pray about it to know if it was true and he said to us in a most serious and sincere voice (in Spanish), "Okay. I must pray." He said a most sincere prayer and then said, "I WILL LIVE THE PLAN. I ACCEPT THE PLAN!!" as if he had just accepted and volunteered as tribute in the hunger games. Hahaha. Best moment ever. He is so stinkin' excited to get baptized, it's out of this world.
Please, please, please pray for Ivette and Freshte. They are both excited for their baptisms this weekend, but Satan sure is shooting fiery darts their way. Pray, pray, pray! I will continue to pray for the triplets as well! Love you!!
Hermana Barnes
1) District dinner with the Romeros!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Chula Vista - Week #44 - Mar 4, 2014

It's rainin' rain, the flu, and miracles of course

Hola mi fam!
Cool miracle: The Romero family from the ward invited Ivette and Freshte (investigators with a baptismal date for the 15th) to a big birthday dinner in downtown San Diego. We later found out that Hermana Romero, instead of enjoying the dinner with her family, spent the whole time answering Ivette's doubts and questions about the church. Ivette told her that she has never felt so ready to get baptized! My testimony of member missionary work sky-rocketed even more this week. Seeing things like this makes me want to baptize the world when I return home.
The flu bug has been going around San Diego, watch out. We've had to go on a bunch of exchanges this week with the other hermanas in our district to be able to make it to appointments in both areas. Jose, the guy we found at the junk-yard site is so cool. We set him with a baptismal date for March 29th on exchanges and he is so excited. So prepared.
Shacht family: They are SUPER solid. They are the family that come to church every single week, have tons a great questions, and really want to get baptized. They told us if something were to happen and the missionaries weren't able to come over anymore, they would continue to read the scriptures and pray every day and go to church every week. So they told us not to ever worry about them. YES. It was music to our ears.
Please pray for Ivette, Freshte, Jose, and the Schacht family. They are all so close to baptism and they need all the prayers they can get.
The big fast for rain is continuing to poor blessings upon San Diego! Literally! SO MUCH RAIN THIS WEEK!! 
Con tanto amor de Chula Vista,
Hermana Barnes
1) Me and Hermana Pendleton at Ocean Beach. I love her. I love the beach. I was even closer to jumping in this time. I'm learning a lot of self-control and resistance to temptation on the mission.
2) Panning for gold at the Mormon Batallion
3) Watch out, he's loaded!