Sunday, April 27, 2014

Semana Santa (Easter)

Well, to be honest Semana Santa was not anything like I expected. The entire city spent the entire week on the beach leaving the streets as deserted as they are and 8 o'clock at night. It made it hard to find new people to teach, but we had some good lessons with our current investigators. It also brought new dishes to try. For Christmas/New Year's everyone makes their tamales and insists that we try them because clearly we haven't had a real tamale until we have tried theirs. For Semana Santa everyone has either papaya en miel or torrejas. They have basically the same kind of sauce that has a honey, mixed with molasses, super sugary sweet flavor, but the papaya obviously has papaya cooked in this sauce and the torrejas are these pancakeish things with an unappealing texture.

     Food is always the most adventurous part of holidays. I was just happy that they offered this instead of Sopa de Mariscos.

     As for really good news, if you remember a long time ago I told you about José Constantino. He's the one who was reading the Book of Mormon from the minute we gave it to him and the one who left for Yoro. Well long story short, HE GOT BAPTIZED!

     We also have set a baptismal date for Anita! In this lesson with her she made me cry twice. Her sister is visiting and though she didn't join us, her presence affected the lesson dramatically. We started out the lesson, shared a beautiful scripture, bore testimony, and asked Anita is she was willing to be baptized next Saturday. I was a little apprehensive, but remembering the change that's taken place in her I didn't truly expect her to reject the date, but she did! She reverted to the old Anita with a million excuses and I started to cry. I didn't understand how this could happen. We tried to probe and figure out what the underlying fear was and finally she shushed us pointing to her sister in the other room. We all fell relatively silent, Hna. Calpa and I thinking long and hard about what we could possibly say/share that would change Anita's mind. I was trying hard to keep tears form completely overflowing because it literally hurt to think that after all that had happened she was going to reject the gospel.
      After a good 5-10 minutes the sister left and once she was a good distance down the road Anita changed the topic back from the weather to her baptism. Her whole attitude changed and her face lit up. She told us that her sister doesn't like it that Anita is listening to us and that she wants to get baptized. That's why she didn't want to talk about it with her within earshot. Anita told us how in everything we've taught, our visits, our service, attending church, and getting to know the members, she's seen true love. ''There's love in other churches,'' she said. ''But in other churches I haven't seen true love like in your church and I want to be a part of that.'' At this point I cried again. This time for pure joy. She's found the truth, and she recognizes it. Anita is going to get baptized and she is going to do great things. It has been a great week, and we've continued to see miracles. It is beautiful what the Lord can do when we let Him work in our lives!

Hasta la proxima!
Hna. Thacker

PS I missed our Easter traditions. I tried to explain the Easter Bunny to my companion and she just looked at me and asked, ''What does a bunny have to do with Holy Week?'' I had a hard time answering that. What does a bunny have to do with Easter? Where did that start?
     They advise us not to mail anything because it is very costly, but if I could I would. I'm not sure if customs would allow me to bring any of my caracols. I need to find out. Also, I would like to know if I can bring cheese home too. The cheese here is... one of a kind... and you all have to try it to understand the meaning of Honduran cuisine.
(Answer to a question) I'm not sure about how the whole season thing works here. It's felt the same since I've gotten here, but they tell me we are in summer now. I really don't know what to expect from here on out. Everyone kept telling me, ''Just wait until Semana Santa.'' or ''You haven't experienced hot until you've experienced Semana Santa.'' Semana Santa didn't feel unusually more hot, and now it's passed...

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