What a week.

I can't believe it's only been one! We had a Christmas party with the missionaries, Christmas, exchanges, and a BAPTISM this week. First let's start with Christmas...

At our Christmas party on the 23rd (which was super awesome and wonderfully spiritual), our mission president told us that we shouldn't be proselyting on Christmas Ever or Christmas but that we could visit members and investigators if we had set appointments. Well we spent basically all of Christmas Eve, because everyone loves us and wanted us to come over so they could ALL FEED US and give us beautiful Christmas gifts. I have never been more spoiled. Then we went to the Ramirez family's house for Christmas Eve dinner, which was tamales (of course), and posole, which is like a soup of sorts. She fed us so stinkin much. I mean, it was delicious, but I could hardly move! Then after dinner, all the missionaries from the stake got together at the stake center for games and activities. Christmas Day we woke up and opened our presents!! Thank you all so much for the wonderful gifts I received. I was enlightened, enriched, and fortified by your love :) We went to the Bowers house for lunch and I GOT TO SKYPE WITH MY FAMILY. Oh man, it was so surreal. It was like I never left home. Or like I was just still living in Boise or something! I loved it, but then all of a sudden it was over. After that we had a couple more appointments with families that, again, wanted to feed and spoil us. Again, we went to the Ramirez's for dinner, and ended our night, again, with games at the stake center! We get to do all of that AGAIN for New Years, although I don't think we are eating at the Ramirez's house... 

Next we had exchanges. I stayed in the area this time and I was with one of the STL's (Sister training leaders), so it was like I was "senior companion" and had to be in charge of all the planning and setting appointments and figuring out how to use our time! Hermana Castrillon and I usually split it and work together to do all that, but since Hermana Dulong (the STL I was on exchanges with) didn't know the area or any of the members or investigators it was like having a greenie with me. All the sisters in my house keep joking and saying that I'm going to train next transfer, so that was frightening to actually see how it would be! Okay, in all honesty it wasn't that bad. We had some really solid lessons and met a lot of new potentials that we are going to start teaching! Hermana Dulong said I did pretty well with taking the lead. So that's comforting. I relied on the spirit a lot!! There were so many times in the day when I just honestly had no idea where to go (because all of our set appointments cancelled on us), or what to teach, so I just stopped and prayed. I pulled over a couple times and just prayed. The power of prayer is amazing and I was comforted every time and led to places where we were able to have success! I encourage all of you to pray! We can't do this on our own. We need Heavenly Father to guide us through the power of the Holy Ghost! 

Okay, finally. PETER GOT BAPTIZED!! Oh my goodness. Peter is Kim's brother and he was someone I never ever thought would be baptized. He didn't like to meet with us and he made fun of Kim for taking the missionary lessons before. But his change was incredible!! He loves chruch. He participates. He feels and recognizes the spirit. And he has taken incredible steps to be get to where he is at now. I love him!! He is an inspiration to me and a testimony that every one needs the gospel. No matter who they are now, or who they were in the past, everyone can change! Peter has reborn yesterday and the gates of Heaven were opened unto him!! This is the real purpose of missionary work. To help people make and keep sacred covenants with our Father in Heaven. Peter has been amazingly blessed already and I cannot wait until Sunday when he receives the gift of the Holy Ghost to be his constant companion! I love this work. I love this area. I love these people. I just love!

You are all in my thoughts and prayers always. Keep me updated on your lives too. I hope Christmas was a spiritual and reflective time for you. I pray that this New Year will bring unprecedented and unimaginable blessings for all of you!

I want to leave you with my favorite scripture from this week:
John 8: 31-32
"Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."

Con Amor,
Hermana Rutherford

Christmas gifts for Hermana Castrillon and I!! 

Jose, Kim, Catalina, PETER, Me, and Hermana Castrillon


Julio baptized Peter!! This one is where he is actually smiling!! Yayyyy :) 

Just the most adorable puppies EVER at Miriam's house a week or two ago! Sorry I am so bad about sending pictures haha