Hermana Sarah Gunderson

Retalhuleu, Guatemala Mission, September 2015-March 2017


June 2016



Matching blue umbrellas
Can’t escape the corn


We made cookies!


Ziplining on Prep-day!


Presidente and Hermana RuizĀ 



Faith for success

It’s really hard to be in the mountains because its a part of the mission thats like the states. We baptize but not like the coast. The people are colder and the work is very different. Baptisms take longer. And then i feel underqulified or like im not doing my job right because we havent baptized yet and the mission is all about 300 plus baptisms. But its something that im working on. Im trying to see miracles in the small things and be the best missionary i can be so that the Lord will help us and we can have baptisms. Ive never prayed so hard. Ive also learned that faith is easy to have when you can see the fruits of your labors. its harder to have faith and patience to wait. But faith is needed to see miracles and I know that we can see them. The success of a missionary isnt the number of baptisms or what title he held but in the ways that he became a better person, in the lives that he touched, and in the way that he became closer to God.
This week our district leader interviewed Elena for baptism and she is praying for a date to get baptised. I know she will do it. She is a person so prepared. She is a miracle that we have. She gives me a lot of hope.
I am really excited about the future. We are figuring out ways to work with members and to get more references and find more new people to teach. We are thinking about ways to help our eternal investigators get baptised. I have faith that we will see baptisms in July. WE CAN DO IT. This area has been the hardest part of my mission. It is challenging me as a missionary and a person so much. But i know that im here for a reason to become the person and the missionary that God needs me to be. And im really grateful to be here. I love these people. And to be honest i would die in the heat of the coast right now.
The second counselor of our bishopric did zumba with us on friday
we played tag with the kids of a recent convert
it rained like noahs ark. with hail. there were literal rivers in the streets
We said goodbye to Presidente and Hna Ruiz on friday. This week Presidente Goodman arrives this week
I am going to make cookies for basically the entire ward today
Hna GUnderson



“Prayers are answered”

This week was better. We had a really cool lesson with Marisol. She has a lot of fears about baptism and the commitment of baptism. she brought her neice to church with her two times and we were going to teach the niece but her dad forbid her to go to the church ever again. I think this really had an impact on Marisol. We taught her and tried to resolve some of her doubts and we asked her to pray about baptism. She still hasnt prayed about baptism i think for fear of the answer. She prayed and asked for courage to do the things that she needed to do. She then finished and she gave us this oatmeal drink and we were talking and she told us that it just came to her that sometimes like Jaime her neice, people want to get baptized but there are real thingsstopping them. But then other times the obstacles arent real they are just put there by our own selves. I really think that this was her answer. She is ready to be baptized. The only thing stopping her is herself. Then she asked us when the next baptisms are. I really have faith that she will get baptized this month. I can feel it.
We interviewed the two girls Jenifer and Karen with our ZLs and they both said yes to baptism. We just have to play with the date because Jenifer is going to Guate to study these next weekends. Im starting to realize that we are finding people who are prepared to hear the gospel, they are just different in than in the coast. In the coast, to me, people prepared meant that they would get baptized in 2 weeks. and sometimes yes thats true, but that doesnt happen in the mountains. But that doesnt mean they arent prepared. They are ready to hear the gospel and they reallly become converted. they might take a little more time but they are prepared.
I went on divisiones with Hna Hopper on thursday and friday and shes new to her area and i dont know San Pedro at all and we got lost for a solid hour looking for a house. We didnt make that appointment…
We taught one of her investigators that told us the story of how he ironed his face. He was sweating and he forgot that he had the iron in his hand and he wiped his face. It was freaking hilarious.
We went ziplining today and it was fun. We also rode in the fullest bus ever on the mountain path back to our areas. the elders had to sit on the top.
We made chocolate chip cookies with my grandma in the ward on sunday and they turned out fabulously.
we ate lunch in the sevicheria (think fish stuff) of a member and both Hna Chajchalac and i hate fish. Before we left we prayed and she asked that we wouldnt eat shrimp for lunch and we didnt. Prayers are answered.
Hna Gunderson


Hard (but good) week

well as a missionary you always have really good weeks and you have some really not so good weeks. Last week was a really good week. this week was a struggle. It was a test of faith, patience, and hope. But there were some good things that happened too. So im going to tell you all of the silver linings of this week.
-on monday, we went to visit a partial family that we are teaching. (mom is not a member the dad is). We have shown up to their house several times wet and cold in the nights to teach them and they have noticed. So Glenda bought us matching tiffany blue umbrellas. It was the cutest thing ever. And i love the umbrellas. they really help. we are going to take a picture with them we just havent found the time to do it yet, so dont worry you will get to see them.
-on tuesday i swear satan was in the dogs and we had SO MANY dogs come after us. The bright side is that none of them bit us. I am pretty sure we were protected by angels at least one time from this one super scary super mean dog that just stopped barking and coming after us for no reason.
-On wednesday we found a new place in champo that we had not seen before and that had a lot of houses to contact. We want to work in champo but we have contacted in almost every part of it. so it was a tender mercy that we found this callejon and were able to contact a new place.
-On thursday we went to visit someone but they werent there so we were trying to figure out somehting to do. Hna Chajchalac had to go to the bathroom so we went to a members house to use their bathroom. She was in the middle/end of making dinner and we walked in and it felt like we were attacked with love. She put us to work helping her with dinner and made us eat like we had been invited to dinner. Then her sons who are returned missionaries were talking to us and said some things that we really needed to hear in that moment that gave us a lot of hope and faith that we needed. it was a dinner of tender mercies
-we had a zone meeting thursday. i like meetings and they had cancelled our district meeting on tuesday because of changes so it was nice to have a zone meeting
-Friday was a good day. people were in their houses, we found new investigators, taught lessons and it was SIGNIFICANTLY better than the other days
-and as always church is a silver lining. Church is always amazing.
I, Hermana Sarah Ruth Gunderson, am going to the gym. Yes you read that right. We go and do zumba and weights in the morning now. Its really fun.
I love being a missionary!!!
Hna Gunderson H

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