Dear Family,

This week was a cool week. Basically, we had the best mission conference ever on Saturday because Elder Bednar himself came. For my friends who don't know, Elder Bednar is a member of the Quorum of the 12 apostles. There are only 12 apostles on the earth, and they are called of God to be prophets, seers and revelators and special witnesses of Christ for the whole world. Remember when Christ called twelve apostles in the New Testament? This is the same thing; they have been called of God and have the authority to act in his name and receive revelation for the benefit of the world. Their responsibility is the preach the gospel, direct the church through revelation, and to be the Lord's hands here on the earth. Basically, it is a great privelage that he and his wife came to speak to the people here in Puerto Rico. On Saturday morning, the two missions had a special meeting with just the two missions (east and west), and it was way cool! Elder Costa and his wife also came, and Elder Viñes, who is president of the Caribe Area.

So. This is how it all went down. We got to wake up an hour early (5:30am. Yay! I didn't realize before what a blessing it was to "sleep in" until 6:30) and meet the rest of our zone and another zone (Our area) in the office. When we all got there, we all got into our little Corollas and made a caravan to the chapel in Caguas. It was really rather exciting because there were about 15 cars all in a row, the whole way to Caguas, which is about 30 or 45 minute drive. We were all corollas and then halfway there we met a caravan being led my the President, who was leading another zone in. So, we all joined together and it was kind of like Corollas were just taking over the roadway. If only there was some way I could take a picture of that. But. Believe it or not...that was not the best part of the day, haha. The best part was when we got there and actually met Elder Bednar.

In preperation, we had read two of his talks that he asked us to read, "Ask in Faith" and "Seek learning by Faith". The first was from General Conference recently (2008) and the second was a talk given to religious educators in the Salt Lake Valley. They were good talks and I learned a lot from them, and I would recommend them to any one who would like to learn more about how our prayers can be more effective, meaningful, sincere, and how we can be directed to answers to our own questions through the gift of prayer. We also were encouraged to think on some questions that we would like answered, and using the doctrine taught in his talks, learn as much as we could about our questions and them come prepared to receive personal revelation at the conference.

When they arrived, we first heard the testimonies of the wives and then we heard a short report on what is being done in Haiti by the church, which is quite interesting. President Viñes, as president of the area is in charge of the relief effort there, so we heard it straight from him and it was interesting to hear about the church in action. Next, Elder Bednar asked if we had read the talks and asked if we had any questions that we needed clarifying on the talks. That is what the meeting was. Questions and answers, but he wasn't giving us all the answers that we wanted. He was directing us towards the answers and we were all taught by the spirit. It was really cool.

About halfway through, we asked people to raise their hands if they had come to the conference with a question, and without asking the question or talking about the question if they had received an answer, and about 60% of us missionaries classified ourselves in this group. He pointed out what a miracle that really is...and it is evidence of the Spirit working in a meeting. It was really cool, and I enjoyed the conference a lot.

One of my favorite things that I learned was the difference between agents and objects. He talks about it a little bit in his talk "Seek learning by Faith."

Another plus of the conference (other than the fun caravan and the visit from an apostle...) is that I got to see and even briefly talk to my companion from the CCM in the DR, Hna. P. !! It was great and it felt really good. Man, I miss that girl. It was good to see her.

Saturday was a great day.

Other exciting things that happened this week include the following:

1. Someone mistook me for a Mexican, which is strange, because I am clearly Gringa and it is easy enough to see this based on my white skin and my atrocious accent. But, I thought it was funny. We laughed pretty hard.

2. We were (almost) attacked by dogs. Ahh! It was terrifying! Usually the dogs are locked behind gates and they just jump on the gates to try to scare us away. But this week, we were walking down the street and for some reason, someone's gates were open (both of them) and their two dogs come bounding out of the house and start barking at us and got really close and almost touched us. Wow. It was scary. But, we escaped. As we returned down the same street, they came again, and the owner actually appeared this time and didn't even seem concerned that her dogs were terrorizing two innocent misioneras. Ay. Stress.

3. We met a women who, upon discovering we were saints of the last days declared that she was a member of the church from the first days "All the way back to Genesis, that is." Sometimes I think I understand what people are saying, but I doubt myself because...well, sometimes it's just so weird. But, after asking my companion, she confirmed that this is, in fact what she said, and we laughed. Looking back, there are lots of things I could have said, if only I didn't doubt my ability to understand. But, again. It was funny.

We didn't have a lot of appointments this week, but we did have some good experiences with investigators. We were knocking doors last week or earlier this week...I don't remember, and we met a 13 or 14 year old boy, Dioney and he said that he thought his parents would be interested, and that we could come back and talk to them when they were there. We said we would come back another day, but later. That same day we met José, who we left a pamphlet of the first lesson with. He was interested in the message we had, but didn't want to set an appointment. He has been looking around at a lot of different churches and is clearly in search of God and the truth. We left him with the pamphlet and without an appointment to return. Later this week, we decided it was time to stop by the visit Dioney. As usual, we parked a little bit up the street, but that day we parked a little bit further away that usual for some reason, around the corner. José lives in the house on the corner and as we were walking by, he comes running out of the house to talk to us. He said he read the pamphlet and wanted to know how the get a Book of Mormon. We talked some, and he seems to be really interested. He thought he had to pay for a Book of Mormon, and was excited when we said it was free. We left him with a Book of Mormon and an appointment to return tonight, so I am really excited to see how the appointment goes.

Since we didn't have a lot of appointments this week we did a lot of knocking, and we actually found a lot of people. I have been trying harder to use a different approach with each person, and try to just follow the spirit in order to say what they most need to hear, but this is very had, because you don't always know where you're going, or what will come out of your mouth next, because you have never said it before. But, although it is harder and a little bit more stressful, we have really been blessed for working by the spirit like this. On one street we scheduled about 5 appointments, which is like, a miracle. Usually we can get get one appointment on a street...if it is a long street and we're lucky. But, it was because we were following the spirit and I know that we were really blessed for that. The spirit knows what the people need to hear, and we just need to be in tune so we can say what they need to hear in order to accept the gospel in their lives. We haven't taught any one yet, but I'm excited to return and teach them because we met a couple families, which is always exciting.

Lastly, we went and taught Orlando again yesterday with his wife, and there also was a neighbor friend, and she was so cool! Her name is Mariely and her husband is in the hospital getting chemo for Leukemia (I think). She really seemed interested in our message and committed to read in the book of Mormon. She was answering questions and helping explain concepts to Orlando, so it was very exciting. We can tell that she is prepared to learn the gospel, because she already has such a good background and understanding of how the Lord works through the spirit. It is very exciting and we're returning later this week to teach her again.

All-in-all, a great week. We had a zone conference on Monday , which was also awesome, but a little overshadowed by the mission conference we had on Saturday.

Thanks so much for your love and support. I love you all and hope everything is going great back at home. Enjoy the snow. :)

Hermana Miller

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