Dear family,

This week was really quite epic...not really. I'm just thinking about your trip. Congratulations on finishing that, by-the-way. One cool thing that happened this week? They were filming Fast and Furious 5 in our area. That's right...word is that they've been all over the island filming crashing cars and exciting police chases, so I may need to watch it just to see the Puerto Rico all over it. We didn't see any one famous and we weren't invited to be extras either, although we really have the missionary look down. It could have been cool. So, when it comes out we can sit down and watch it, and I will tell you when my my area comes up that, "Hey! I used to contact people on that street!" Haha. It was cool. Also, there is an Elder in my district with dengue, which is also cool, but kind of sad for him.

Other cool things happened too. One of our investigators is really interesting. She has this trip to California planned for the end of this week. While in California, she will see family members and also, go to a healer who will heal her lower back pain "through the power of Jesus Christ" for the low, low price of $200. She will be with the healer for 2 hours. All she knows is that she'll "give 10 and he'll give 1," referring of course to the necessary faith. She says that he is really good and that you have to set an appointment with him one year ahead of time. Anyway. We've been hearing about this trip for a while and have been concerned about it, so we told her we were concerned this week and told her that men with the priesthood don't sell its power. It seemed to make a lot of sense to her. We asked her, "What would you do if you knew there were men right here on the island with the power to heal?" She said that she would like to meet them, "But I bet they have a long line of people waiting for that." Haha. It kind of made us laugh that she said that, but we went over with the Elders the next day to give her a blessing. We're going back tomorrow to see how she is. Something that is really admirable about this story is how much faith she really has. She has faith in Jesus Christ and his power to heal. The problem is that her faith was just a little misplaced in believing in things that were not true. I guess this experience helped me understand that Alma scripture better.

We met a lady on the street the other day named Maria. We went to her house later this week and they were just leaving, but we talked to her husband and he told us to come back another day. We hadn't even told him who we were or what our message was, but he said, "Come back tomorrow because you look really interesting." Um... It was kind of weird and I may have been a little skeptical, but they ended up being really cool. He kept saying, "That is sooo cool!" and "Wow. How interesting." Haha. We haven't taught a complete first lesson, but we will this week.
We had zone conference this week. While there, I met sister missionaries who are younger than me! (As in started being missionaries after me). It seems that the east mission was getting all the new sister missionaries since I came to PR and the west mission wasn't getting any! I have been the youngest sister in the mission (except two that came in the transfer after me) ever since I got to PR, but now we have younger sisters. It is weird, but at the same time exciting; I'm not the baby anymore!

Elder Vines came to our zone conference, which was great. He talked about making the church a multi-generational church here in Puerto Rico, because that is where true strength comes from. He also talked about some things that we want to do as missionaries to help recent converts stay active after their baptism. One change was the requirement for church attendence prior to baptism. It used to be 3 Sundays, but now investigators have to attend church as many times as is required for them to fit in comfortably as a part of the congregation. I think that is a lot better than just assuming that 3 times in church will do it.

The Solano family is feeling more and more comfortable in church. They are progressing really well. They accepted Tithing this week and keeping the Sabbath day holy. Also, Plinio got a job! We are all very excited. He is still looking around because it is not the best job, but it is great he has that because he has been looking for over a year. Maria is coming to a RS activity tomorrow and seems to be more friendly with the sisters every week. :)

We recently got Elders in our ward. It is great to have somebody working on your team. Not that we are teaming up against any one, but it is good to bounce ideas off one another. We have planned to have some sort of weekly sport night thing (it was their idea) which will help give the church a little bit more public light and help to create some sort of fellowship between church members. I am excited. Also, I guess one of the Elders was border-line hippie before being a missionary (I mean, as hippie as you can be as a mormon) and he has tie-dyed sheets. That he tie-dyed himself. So, one day we are going to make tie-dyed shirts together (maybe next p-day). I'm excited about that too.

Love,
Hermana Miller


Hola Familia,

I loved the pictures you sent me this week and look forward to a detailed explanation of exactly what "Harry Potter Island" is, and what you did there. Send as many pictures as possible for that one.

The work here is great. I love this area we're in; there are not as many mountains to climb or as many mosquitos, but who misses that? Haha. Just kidding. I really did like hiking around Utuado. But Guaynabo is doing very well.

We are still working with the Solano family, and they are progressing well. They are still struggling a little with the Word of Wisdom, but the father said that he is taking some pills from the doctor to help him with his cigarette problem (I'm not sure what pills they may be), and they said they didn't buy any more coffee this week when they went shopping. :) I am really excited about that, because I see it as a large step of faith on their part, and so I expect them to recieve blessings for that. We discussed thier baptismal date with them and changed it . The father actually set it himself; we asked him how long he'd like to wait, and he said he would be ready in 2 weeks. We are really excited about their dedication to the things they are learning. They continue coming to church weekly, which is great. They really seem to like it and are getting more and more comfortable there.

We do a lot of walking here because we still don't have a lot of appointments, so we walk to appointments and talk to people on the way. We met a guy this week with really intense dreds, and he seemed really interested. When we told him about the Book of Mormon, he wanted to know if it was legit, or if some human made it up. We told him it was real and written by ancient prophets, and that it contained the fulness of the gospel. He let us set an appointment to come and see him, and we were really excited. BUt then they put Elders in our ward, and where he lives is where they are working. They went to see him and taught the first lesson, and said he was really cool. It was probably better that the Elders went because one of the Elders is a surfer and as hippi as you can get and still be Mormon, so they really clicked, I guess. They talked about surf boards and looked at all of his and he sang for them (because I guess the guy with the dreds is a singer in a band). We're really excited for the Elders to teach him. :)

We also had a contact on the freeway on-ramp. We were just talking to this guy there for 35 minutes (don't worry; it was on a side-walk with a guard rail between us and traffic), and in the end he accepted a Book of Mormon. It was cool. He really likes to read, and he said he would read in the book. I really like walking around and just talking to random people on the side of road; you never know who you're going to meet.

We are really excited to have a set of Elders working in our ward with us; they are really great missionaries. We went to have a lesson with a part-member family with them this week (to introduce them to each other), and it was really great; you could feel the spirit very strongly as one of the Elders testified of the blessings of the Temple and eternal families. I am really excited for this part-member family, because the husband is not a member, but he attends nearly every week with his wife. He is just afraid to covenant with the Lord, when he knows that as a human being, he is fallable. I know the Elders are going to help him.

I love you so much and hope all is well! Can you believe you're almost done with your trip?! It has been longer than a transfer already. Crazy.

Love,
Hermana Miller


Dear family,

I tried a new fruit this week. Canepas! They are kind of like the hairy fruit that I tried in January, but a little bit more tart. I have enclosed a picture. We saw someone selling them on the side of the road and bought some the other day. I know that sounds a little sketch, but that happens all the time here. They were tasty. I would try to describe the taste to you, but they are unique. You just have to come here next summer to try them. Yum.

We have some great investigators here in Guaynabo. The family we are teaching is progressing beautifully. We did a noche de hogar with them last night and they loved it. Part of it was a memory game with pictures of them. It was fun to make and a BIG hit; they loved it! It was fun to play. We brought a member family with us and they really became good friends. It was good to see that amistad between them kind of start. We are a little worried about the mother, Maria, because she is very shy and hasn't really made any friends at church. She kind of clings to us, but we are working on finding her a friend. We have brought a member over with us, and the member is very kind to her, but Maria is very shy. We're working on it. They are progressing with the word of wisdom. Maria was drinking 2 cups of coffee a day and now she is down to one. Plinio is changing just as we saw Maria change. He is happier and more smiley now, even though he still doesn't have a job. The gospel changes people. You know that it is the gospel, because it is the only variable in their life. I love to see that!

Magalie, the one we conditionally committed to baptism last week has not received an answer about the Book of Mormon (she hasn't asked yet), but she has read a lot. She read 2 Ne 31 (which we left) and also 32 and 33, and then read the introduction and the testimonies and the first chapter of 1 Nefi. We are really excited for her. We set a date for 28 Aug. We told her about how sometimes answers don't come right away, but they always will come. At the end of the cita when we asked her to pray, part of her prayer was that she might receive an answer quickly so she could get baptized as we had planned together. We are really excited for her, because she is developing a love for the Book of Mormon already.

The ward is doing great. We are visiting a member and helping her develop a true love for the scriptures. The members are recognizing their responsibilities and how it is important for them to go to work too. As one member said to us this week, "Why would the Lord give us any new families if we can't take care of the ones we already have?" That was spot on and it really excited us that they are are aware of and making plans to fulfill their responsibilities.

We moved into our new apartment this week. It is nice. It is a cottage. Seriously though. It is a pre-furnished apartment and is decorated in what I like to call "Old Lady chic". Very nice. I imagine Little Red Riding Hood's grandmother living there. Our landlady's name is Yaya (pronounced Ja-ja), which is also very cool.

Lastly, we had a district activity today in a fun place called "Ă„dventureland". Not that fun. The height of the adventure was sneaking onto the twelveth floor of the building to see what was up there (it turns out to be nothing but a large empty room...ps. we didn't really sneak up...we just went up and it turns out no one was there to tell us not to), and a large plastic dinasaur outside. I've attached pictures of all the fun adventures this week to keep you up-to-date.

I love you,

Hermana Miller

***********************

5111: A pretty rainbow we saw on the way to district meeting this morning. I like the change n the sky color. Pretty!


5081: Me with our memory game. It was tons of fun!



5073: Canepas! This is an extra strand that the guy gave to me. He saw me taking a picture of his stand (and naturally he was in the picture), so we predict that he thought I was taking a picture of him and then he vey kindly gifted me these extra canepas. I'm okay with that. :)



5130: This was at adventureland. It is an albino boa conastrictor. I took this picture so that if I ever decided to buy snake skin boots, I'd be able to show the craftsman what kind of snake skin I want. It was pretty.





5142: This is me in the big emptyroom on the twelfth floor we went to at adventure land. It had pretty views on the city of Carolina.




5156: Me with the dinasaur. Cool.

love,

j