Wednesday, June 25, 2008

June 25, 2008 Letter


...Whaaat.... I´m allowed to start counting now aren´t I? ...Haven't been counting the whole mish until now. I can hold up my hand and stare at the four fingers that are left. ha-ha, jk. Heh, I remember a time when I was still saying I had nine months or something when I had about 10/11... :P REALLY I can't pay attention to the time.
BUT seriously... Don't worry, I'm staying focused, there are SO many other important things to focus on right
A Baptism next Saturday! w00t! His name is Adam (Adán) and he is one of the most amazing, non-Dominican-Dominicans I have had the oportunity to meet. In other words, he's humble, funny, smart, has good values, he's willing to fullfill the commandments the Lord has given him etc. Doesn´t smoke, he hardly drinks, but he agreed to stop in a second. He has a little business that he even CLOSED ON SUNDAY morning to go to CHURCH!!!... (heh, funny, cuz his car was the only one in the lot...) We jumped for joy to see him pull up (thanks to Hna Meyer, who knows a lot about cars, who recognized his Honda). He wants to start a better business that doesn't sell alcohol.... ?!? ... (this is a shock, bacause the DR comsumes more alcohol than the states combined and it's the ¨best¨ comodity to sell in the stores...) He wonders all the time why all those Dominicans are so evil... (YEAH, we say... tell us about it :P ) His son once stole everything he owned (a LOT of stuff) and he's learning to forgive and love him. He doesn't have a girlfriend and doesn't want anything to do with relations until he finds a worthy wife (Yay Adam!!!) He told us how he doesn't have any friends cuz they're all bad people, and when he came to church he looked around, turned to us and said with wide eyes ¨these are good people!¨ He has great values and wants to have a bright future...
This is how we FOUND him... And he said the most beautiful words, in a casual conversation, that I have ever heard on the mish... ¨when I'm a member...¨
We hope to see him this Sunday at church and we'll continue to prepare him for his baptism.
His daughter is a member too, but inactive. He didn't even know until we found him! We are hoping they can be good examples to each other.
Well, wish us luck with all our other investigators and inactives...
Love you Mom and Dad!! Miss you bunches!
hmm... no proof-read-- Bye!
Hna Julie Benson

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

June 18, 2008 Letter

hard days work...

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!!! - I promise , I'm trying to prioritize a chunk of good time to make you and mom a fun card, and that doesn't even count waiting for it in the mail... Just remember I still Love you both VERY much even if I have issues trying to send it to you. HAVEN't forgotten you. ;D There's just so much to do, organize, take care of - the people we have to pay attention to and give our whole efforts to... barely have time to take care of myself... I guess that's the idea. That's prolly the reason I haven't sent a card out yet. Sorry. ;P
How was the Dad's-day celebration? Special days of the year for special parents like you. SOOOO lucky. I'm not so anxious to be a mom yet... golly , I'm still on a mission... ba'ha'ha! jk.
Hey, Mom, I noticed your question about the money and I should prolly let you know the situation. Ever since I was in Los Alcs we've had to pay a ton of passage to get around to our two areas just to go teach, etc, and that money would go pretty fast in a week ot a month. But the dumb thing was that when they said it got reembersed that reembersment took FOREVER. So I was having to pay for food and passage with my own money... that's no fun.
And even now, when we moved out here to Villa we came to a FILTHY elder's house and had nothing to clean it with, so we needed to buy some basic supplies for the house which would also be reembersed, but that still hasn't shown up yet... SO I have had to use a bit of my own cash to cover for our present needs until that roll back in. I hope it's all back to normal soon ... I hope I hope I hope...
In other news , we have actually had a pretty rough week. Although we have found a great group of investigators we're working with, there was a day that it just hit us hard... these Dominicans can be Really Hard Hearted... i mean... really. And my heart just aches to see these people in their state... this country is drowning in its own evil, (if I might put it lightly) ... sometimes I can't believe the things people do here. WHY?!?? I ask myself, and hit myself in the head. I feel like we're teaching them basic human values and telling them not to lie their whole life through more than getting them baptized... though we ARE praying fervently and faithfully to find the right people. Not to mention there are a TON more inactive people around than there are actives... we're focusing on them as well . But the days get better when we need to just keep going, and more and more we realize why exactly we're here... AND we've got the Lord at our back... so anything's possible. ;) Yo -ho-ho!

¨For the LORD¨

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

June 11, 2008 Letter

Ho there!

IT's HOT!!!!!!!
and too darn HUMID!!
...actually at this moment it's bloomin hot, and I can hardly type for too long before I have to stop and fan myself. *blehhh* The light left (aka the power went out) and they´re using the generator to power the computers and won't turn on the fans...*bleh* again. It was raining too, so not many breezes either...
ANYwho, dying of heat.... ummmm
OH, so I got bit by a dog the other day... think he drew blood but really it just turned ino a big bruise. Nothing really. Didn't foem at the mouth er nothin'. It was really funny though... :P It was half my falt, but not really,... but kinda all happened so suddenly. The dog was crazy so I blame it on him. I have a rip in my dress to prove it. :) hehe.
Hey, random question: how do get my buns of steel back?!? All advice is welcome. =)
We have found some great investigators this week (and a lot of not-so-good ones) but some on the verge (WE HOPE) of baptism... Pray for us to be good instruments in teh Lord´s hands to help them! We have had to start over completely after a number of elders who didn't do their job... and there are a TON of inactives. *sad face* But the lucha goes on.

pic 1- Our chapel :D

pic 2- ummm princesses??...

pic-3 ugly duck - (my arm looks kinda big huh... but it really is quite muscly. )
pic-4 dog bruise
5- horsing around at a local ¨Bon¨ ice cream store yeehaww!
6- BIG beatle
7- FULL, TINY guagua that we sat in for a long time to our house... we live pretty far from the city... pretty far. But it's a beautiful ride if you look outside. ;)
8- ooo! this is cool, this is how my hair has bleached from being in the sun.
9- AND last one, today's mountain scene by teh chapel... very pretty.

I love you, and you, and you , and you, and you, aaaand YOU! Thanks all for your suport!
....sorry, it's waaay too hot, I can't go on... seeya!
Hna Jules Benson

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

June 4, 2008 Pictures B

round two

1- CUTE adorable crazy faced kids of a wonderful member family.
2- THIS is sweet Antonia, an investigator from our last area ( so basically all the pics you've seen so far were from Los Alcs, last area... the move was sad and sudden...) Antonia loves the church and even WALKED to church (she lives flippin' FAR) a couple times before a member gave her a ride. But that shows her determination to find the truth... you NEVER see that in domincans... EVER. So we stuck with her and kept teaching her family. She needs to get married to her husband (thanks heaven he's faithful) before she can get baptized... She's a fun lady... gonna miss her.
3- Church in los Alcs... this is how fast the rain comes... and it's rain season, even worse out here in Villa Altagracia. It's kind of out in the boonies and when we tell people that we live there people always gasp or gawk in surprise... but it's beautiful and green. It's a nice little town, kind of... KIND of reminds me of home... in an eery sort of way. But I like it. Did I mention the house was filthy??? Yeah, took us a whole two days to clean it right... those darn elders don't know anything...
ANywho... we're in a lush, green valley surrounded by mountains... I'll get some pics out later.
4- Oh, here's a lovely pic of the clear-water waterfall right next to our house. It's quite pleasant.
5- AND a cute little puppy I put in my shirt pocket for a while. (don't worry mom, I washed my hands real good after) ;)
Love to all!!!
Hna Benson
JR my brother!- what's your blog? can't find it. I want to print out pictures of you to look at all the time. I don't have any! thanks, Love you so much and miss you Dr. Jay!
Oh, PS- Leonel won the elections... just in case anyone was curious. :P

June 4, 2008 Pictures A


Pics! and this time of real people. yay!
1- well... almost real people... this one's a cute sleeping kitty. =)
2- Gabriel and another member, they're both crazy. Gabriel is a riot. His family aren't members. They wouldn't listen to us much so we told him he's gotta be the spiritual stronghold to be the perfect example to his family. He's a strong member already, now his influence can effect his whole family.
3- some more members playing dominos. yeah, the all dominican game. the one waving is Erik. He is Hna Taylor's baptism, not even a year, and he's the ward secretary, VERY strong member, one of the best they got. He helps us with a lot. He knows a lot of English and teaches the Eng clas Saturdays. Awesome guy.
4- this is Neli and two of her 4, 5 ? kids. She and her husband are saving up money to get married, so they can get baptised. WOOT! Very cute family. And progressing quickly.
5- ... very pregnant woman leading the kids in a fun water activity. :D
6- Delio, another strong member of only, what... 7, 8 months? Yeah, he got beptized just barely after I left for LA. I got to go back and visit for his baptism. He also helps out a lot. Funny guy, we love 'im.
7- ooo cool negative shot.
anywho... next slide coming up...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

May 28, 2008 Letter


Slap in the face transfer change!!!!
So they took us both out of Kilometer 23 and drove us farther up north ot a place called Villa Alta Gracia. People say it's dangerous and we should get home earlier etc... everyone says that about everywhere, but we're always careful. :) So we're here now and it's more jungly, our house is pretty roomy and things are nice inside. good fridge, washer and kitchen... hmm, didn't look at the stove yet... but is was all dirty and junk was lyin' around cuz we replaced the Elders before us. But still we're technically white-washing an area again. weeeird. But we already love it. We have a district of us four, 2 hnas and 2 eldrs who are really cool and old friends in the mish. I have a feelling things are going to go really well. Eventhough we're much farther away from the world, big stores, and fun zone activities etc, we're gonna have our own fun in our little town... actually reminds me a lot of Logan. It's got that kind of atmosphere... kind of... or maybe I'm just trunky. NOOOO don't say that!!
shh.... you heard nothing....
We are going to see Elder Cook in june pretty soon ( he's a Loganite!!) How cool is that?? yeah, we're stoked.
I'm gonna miss my last area.... we left behind a lot of golden investigators... we revived the area a whole lot. we seemed over burdened with great investigators after 4/5 weeks. It's always so hard to leave. I hope the elders that took over will take GOOD care of them and get some of them baptised in June. Yay! then we could go attend the baptism too.
So we're here to revive another area... from the ashes, so to speak... ;)
Your prayers are felt deeply, thanks to all for your love and support.
until next week...
signing off,
Agent : Benson
PS - ....Ernie! My eyes are turning green!!! *gasp*

Sunday, May 18, 2008


Man, Last week it was SO stinkin' hot I coudn't even think straight... But anyway. TOO much has been goin' on... and it's hot again... and I owe you folks some pictures. =)
So here we go:
1. Hna Marianne Meyer! My sweet little companion and friend. I took one just now cuz I haven't pulled out the camera that much lately. :P I love it when he shares her testimony, Sometimes it's exactly what the investigatores need to hear and she understands enough now that she knows exactly what to say, Simply and boldy. I've also learned so much from her already. This transition of areas, people, traveling, new home (which I'm quite fond of already), and manner of work... it's all quite different, as every area is different, and a bit unnerving sometimes. I wish the Lord would tell me what he brought me back for exactly... hmm... I may have a few guesses already, but it's only been what... a week?? psh. Well, when real stuff starts happening I'll tell ya, and about investigators too. :)
2. funny face... that was my lat day at Helen's... *sniff* it's no fun saying goodbye...
3. Chicharra!! Cool bug friend. =P Very friendly.
4. um... just havin' some fun with the equipment... That day we were helping an investigator clean out their house: ¨Pour water on every corner and get Satan out of this house!¨ was what they said. =D Anyway, that big yellow friend was sittin' in the back yard so I ran over to it, hugged it, and said lovingly ¨Are you my mother??¨ ha ha. yeah.
5. releif society activity where they taught us how to cook chicken 3 diffferent ways (wasn't time for the fourth!) MMM!! The pollo de piña was AMAZING!! We must attempt to cook it sometime. Yes. Those women sure know what they're doing.
7. HAHA!! okay, I'll just start our by saying that it was all my fault, BUT the story is good anyway. SO, after Zone Conferencia, mi Hna needed some supplies at the store, so we planned to swing by (w/ permision!) and pick of some stuff and then go right back home... I what I failed to remember was that I had the keys to the house... and the other Hna's that we live with were going straight home. They wouldn't be able to get inside!!! EEEP!! I only realized this in the check out line, and luckily we hadn't planned to stay very long. ANyway, I got to the house, expecting to see the hna's huddling in the nearest spot of shade from the intense heat of noon day, but noticed the house was open... How did they get inside?? Well, look at eh picture... that little spike that's missing on the gate above?... yeah, Hna Rivera, a cute little misionera from El Salvador, and I mean LITTLE... had climbed through that little nook, jumped through the window and opened the door. I gotta send you a pic. I'll try to get more pictures of people instead of bugs, dogs, and gates... :P
Love you all, thank you so much for all your support, e-mails, and Prayers!
Hna Jules Benson
PS - please ask me questions! I'm really not good at telling you what's going on... quiz me! I feel like every e-mail is just a BLAH of words that I throw out like I'm banging on the key board and hitting 'send' ... please tell me it all makes sense and satisfies your curiosities of my mission life...
hm... can't spell either. Foo.