Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Changes Coming...

This last week has been pretty crazy. I don't even know where to start! Let's start on last Thursday shall we? 

Thursday we went to a members house for lunch. He just moved from the Spanish to the English ward. He made us the most amazing homemade tomato and basil soup with grilled cheese sandwiches! It was so amazing. That night we got to make papa la huancaiena! it was yummy! and very simple! If you would like it, I'll give you the recipe. :)

Friday I learned how to make another one of my favorite dishes out here! Habichuelas! Beans! Hahaha they are the most amazing beans you've ever had though! It is like really soupy and you put it over rice. IT IS SO GOOD!  We also had an amazing lesson with one of the members mother. We knew she was ready for baptism and so we straight up asked her. She said yes! And is getting baptized on Saturday! It was an amazing experience and the Spirit was really able to touch her heart, as well as ours, and help us be on the same page. 

Friday is also the day that my current companion Hermana Rogers has decided it is time to end her mission and return home for health reasons. If you would like to know more, please visit 

Saturday was good! We had a late Valentines day party and sang karaoke! I sang Alejate by Josh Groban. hahahahahaha everyone did tell me I had a beautiful singing voice! ;) 

Sunday we had dinner at one of our member's house. His name is Leo and he is an AMAZING cook. He is also a marine. He made us spicy wing shepards pie. Again, it was amazing!! 

Monday we had interviews with President Morgan. He is such an awesome guy and really makes you feel great about the work that you are doing. He told me that I really need to be working on being ready to train because there are so many new sisters coming in! We also found out that one of our elders who has been waiting for his visa to Brazil will be leaving Monday 4th for BRAZIL! He is very excited to be headed there. (especially with the World Cup and all...;))

Tuesday we mailed a lot of Hermana Rogers stuff home! It kind of makes me home sick just because of how excited she is to see her family, but I know that this is right where I am supposed to be. Luckily that helps ground me! We talked with Sonia, who is getting baptized, about what it means to take upon ourselves the name of Christ. It was a great lesson, and we felt the Spirit strongly testify of the power of the Atonement. 

Kelly and Ashley, cute in stripes!

Today, Wednesday, Sister Rogers went to the temple with the other departing missionaries. There are 14 elders leaving and 1 sister! hahaha I went on a split with Sisters Campbell, and Lavaki. We went down to 42nd street and went shopping! Well window shopping. Forever21 here has 4 floors so, it was like, so overwhelming!! Hahaha it was a great day! 

And I am very happy to know that I am doing the Lords work. He knows me personally and knows where I need to improve, and how I need to do it. I know as I do it, that there are going to be hard times, but I will become who the Lord needs me to be and be all the better for it. 

I love you all so much! Thank you for your prayers and support! Have a wonderful week! 

Love, Hermana Lancaster

p.s. I lost my camera. So no pictures this time! Sorry! 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Infinite worth

To my wonderful friends and family; 

So to start off, the computers are broken at the church so we are at the library. And I spent a lot of my time writing back to your e-mails! But I feel so loved! I had 20 e-mails in my inbox! TALK ABOUT LOVE! 

Also, to state the great news here, my grandparents have been called to serve in the LONDON, ENGLAND TEMPLE MISSION! I am so so happy!! They are going to be leaving May 27. I love them so much and I know they are going to rock it! 
Grandpa and Grandma Strong with aunt Kristy, uncle Ryan, uncle Will and aunt Julie
London England Temple
So this week has been pretty chill! We have been working hard to figure out a new teaching method that we have been taught. It is different but it is effective. :)

This past Valentines Day, the zones in Manhattan and the Bronx met together to get our new bank cards! Exciting! Hahaha then we got to go eat lunch in the city. Which costs about $10 (which is way too expensive for a missionary budget.) hahaha, yes I did just have a diet coke. ;) 

On Saturday we cleaned the church and it was crazy. Well I went crazy. I was cleaning like a mad woman trying to make that church shine like the top of the Chrysler building! :)

On Sunday I taught the Sunday School lesson!! It was so scary because I had 0 notice before hand. And I had to teach it in Spanish. But it was about la Expiacion, the Atonement, and it actually went pretty well!! 

On Monday we went to a members house for lunch and had an amazing time talking about being daughters of God. I have been feeling pretty down on myself and boy did she just boost my spirit to the ceiling! She is amazing. I hope that she can write a book someday because a lot of girls need to remember that they are daughters of our Heavenly Father. He doesn't make "junk." We are of infinite worth and have a divine nature. We are amazing! 

Yesterday we had a nail party with some of the girls in our ward! We watched The Testament and did our nails! Haha it was good to just sit and talk with them about life and about the gospel. 

Tomorrow I will learn how to make one of my ultimate favorite things I have eaten out here. PAPA A LA HUANCAINA. It is a Peruvian dish that is so amazing! (Peruvian potatoes with a spicy cream sauce). We have a member who is from Peru, and we just received a missionary who is from Peru as well! Needless to say we are very excited! 

I hope that everyone has an amazing week! I love you all so much! Keep warm and spread the love!! 

Love you!! 

Love, Hermana Lancaster

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Splits, Sickness, and Surprises!


So first off, MY GRANDPARENTS ARE GETTING THEIR MISSION CALL TODAY! I will talk more about it next week because then I will know where they are headed too! 

Ashley loving it in the big city

So this past week has been different! 

Hermana Rogers had her 1 year mark! She only has 6 months left till she heads back to Texas! She is awesome! But unfortunately, she has been sick this past week. So sick that we have had to stay in to have her rest! It was a great time for me to show service to her but I felt bad that there wasn't anything I could do to really help her out! We played a lot of games and read lots of scripture. 

This past Friday I was able to go on a split with Hermana Aguirre! She is a "traveling sister" which is kind of like the sister version of the AP's. We went up to Yonkers and starting off contacting. The first people we talked to we found out they were members who had been baptized in El Salvador when they were young! We took them to the chapel and had a great lesson with them! They should be coming to church from now on. Then we went and had a lesson with a recent convert and his family. We were able to touch the hearts of the 17 and 18 year old children but the members wife is still not softened enough. She is happy that her children have excepted to be baptized but doesn't feel like she needs it. It was a great split and I was able be with an amazing example of a great missionary, Sister Aguirre! 

Hermana's Rogers and Aguirre (when they were companions in Harlem)
Melissa was confirmed this Sunday! She looked so beautiful and grown up! It was a great blessing as well. And our recent convert Dionisio wore a suit to church! He started off with jeans and a tee and now he is going to be receiving the priesthood! We had an amazing lesson with him yesterday with our ward mission leader about the priesthood and the responsibility that comes with it. 

That night we went over to a couple missionaries home for dinner! They are SO amazing! They are from Logan and have been serving here since October. Sister Wheelwright has worked for Utah State University for the past 12 years and also is hard of hearing so she gets to have a hearing dog! Her name is Angel and she is a yorkie! They are so awesome and told us about how they met and how much they enjoyed raising their children! I want to be like them one day. Elder Wheelwright also always tells us awesome stories about his mission in Hawaii! 

So this Monday we had a zone training on a new way we will be teaching the gospel. We have been asked to be direct and bold. We are here to invite others to come unto Christ. That is our main job and if someone says no, that's cool but we at least have to invite them. We are also focusing on shorter lessons so instead of maybe an hour lesson, we will be focusing on 20 minute short to the point, bold lessons. It is going to be a change, especially in the Spanish program, but it will be great. 
Ashley and Hermana Rogers at a subway station

We did a mini-table activity in one of the subway stations while it was snowing pretty bad. We handed out The Family: A Proclamation to the World

"Do you want to have a more united family?"

Hermana Rogers handing out a The Family: A Proclamation to the World Handout 's en Espanol

Another funny thing that happened this Monday was an emergency dinner. Now, if you have been on a mission where the members feed you a lot, and where you sometimes don't clarify the number of missionaries who will be attending, you will understand this story well. So Elder Lee and Elder Fragiacomo are the English elders in our area and they called us up in a panic because the other set of English elders, who happen to be the AP's, were unable to make it to their dinner appointment. Hermana Rogers wasn't feeling very good but we said we would be there as soon as we could. We got there and actually had an awesome time with the family! The wife is Dominican and has an amazing conversion story! When she was younger and in the DR she was fascinated with bikes, guess who had bikes? The missionaries. She followed them one day begging to ride their bikes. They said no, so she went around the back of the house they were at and stared through the window. She said that when they started talking about the boy who saw the lights in the sky who looked like people, she lost interest in the bikes and was drawn in to the picture. She said it kept getting brighter and brighter! Her family moved to New York and after she had been living here for a while she had a pretty traumatic situation happen to her. She was walking down the street and there was shooting and a guy close to her had gotten shot. She said she stayed with him until the ambulance came but that she went home and just felt horrible. Having been raised catholic, she was taught never to pray to God directly, but she just felt that wasn't right. So she prayed directly to God to make sure that man was going to be okay. She said an amazing peace came upon her and she felt amazing. She went out and told her mom that she could hear God talking to her and her mother actually put her in the psychiatric ward. They released her quickly and she told her mom that she could still hear the voice of God and that she knew that she needed to find his church. One day she was with her friend and her friend said, "okay we have to go to my aunts house and she is crazy. she always has these guys at her house teaching her, you'll see." They walked in and she flipped. It was the missionaries! (Unfortunately one of the elders thought she was on drugs and wouldn't teach her.) It wasn't until a new elder came that she finally got them to teach her! The new missionary said "does the word "golden" mean anything to you?" She was taught and baptized! 

Yesterday we were able to go to the CITY! Sister Rogers had a doctors appointment on like 80th and Park Ave. It was BEAUTIFUL! Upper East Side. We stopped for lunch at Shake Shack and it was soooo good. I love that part of the city. 
At the Shake Shack....yum!

Yesterday night we had a Noche de Hogar which is like a ward family home evening. We had planned a huge lesson on families and how love is spelled t-i-m-e. Unfortunately, we only had 4 people come. and they are 4 single men. So, we had a huge change of plans and we ended up having a lovely lesson on missionary work. Haha, oh it was great. 

We just received a new missionary! It is only half way through the cycle and so it is a little strange, but with the way the MTC is changing things, we will have people be entering the field at different times. But the Elders who are training him, were called MONDAY! and told they were going to train on Wednesday. CRAZY! usually you have at least a weeks notice. 
It's cold outside!

Okay well I love you all so much and I am so thankful for all your support, prayers, and love! 


Love, Hermana Lancaster  

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Melissa's Baptism, and Busy Days!

Hey Ya'll! I hope this week has treated you well! We had a busy week! 

We had a baptism this Sunday for Melissa! It was wonderful! We had it right after church so a lot of members came and also the investigators that had come to church that day! She had her godfather baptize her and she will be getting confirmed on Sunday the 10th. It is so crazy to think that she is Easton's age. Maybe that is just because she is my little best friend. We always talk about One Direction and Justin Bieber. She is wonderful! 

Ashley and Melissa on her baptism day

We had a fabulous dinner on Sunday! I know you all probably partied it up! We had hamburgers and hot wings and milkshakes! It was SO wonderful! I was stuffed! I also got to see an amazing touchdown by the one and only Dennis Pitta. :) 

So just so you all know, the 4th was my half birthday! Yay!! I am halfway to 22! That, my friends, is crazy. 

Yesterday was crazy! To get the full scoop in beautiful words, check out my companions blog She is an English major so she knows how to write:) 

We had previously set up an appointment for a potential investigator about 2 weeks ago and it kept falling through, so a few days ago we called the "Dulce" (an investigator) in our phone list and were able to set up an appointment for Tuesday. After church on Sunday a lady in our ward came up to us and said, "Hey you guys are coming to my house on Tuesday right? I'm the Dulce you called." Our jaws dropped (we realized we called the member Dulce instead of the investigator Dulce) We said "Yes" and planned our investigator Dulce's visit for later. So Tuesday rolls around and we are excited because we have a full day planned. Around lunch time we went to the bodega by our apartment and I had our awesome friend Xavier make me a copy of "the italian" I think it's called. The sandwich from Zubs with the pastrami? Well it was good and Hermana Rogers got an awesome sandwich too. He gave them to us for basically nothing. He is awesome. He's one of those people who are always nice to the missionaries but unfortunately, never interested. Any ways, we stuffed our faces and we were so full. 

We bundled up because it was FREEZING and headed for Dulces. We were walking there and Sister Rogers was like, "I really hope she isn't planning on feeding us..." We got there and right when she opened the door, we could smell it, food. "GREAT!", we thought.
She had prepared us lunch. Like a lot of it. So we just smiled and tried to take as little as possible. There were some pretty scary things sitting on the table. And then when we thought we were done, there was more! My stomach hurt so bad. 
Lunch with Dulce #1 and friends
We tried to have a spiritual thought, and instead of lasting about 10 minutes it was more like 20. This actually is what usually happens. Everyone likes to talk which is great! But we were too late for our appointment with the "other" Dulce. The one we really meant to set an appointment up with. We got there without a problem and unfortunately, she straight up told us that she was happy with her church. Then she asked us what we thought about families and marriage so we explained the Family Proclamation to the World to both her and her mother who was probably 80. Her mom was SO hilarious. She was like, "how old are you girls?" and we said 21 and 22 and she said, "well you girls better hurry up and get married." We laughed and looked at each other like, "great this is what everyone thinks of us." But then Dulce said something about maturity and how much more mature we were going to be for studying the word of God. So that was a nice turn around.  :) 

We said a prayer and left. It was snowing. And we had another appointment. When we got to her house we realized something was off. We sat down and asked if we could sing a hymn and she went to get a hymn book. We looked at each other and then we saw the Adventist hymn book. She sang us a hymn and we sang her one. We started a lesson and she just wasn't getting it. She seemed like way out of it. So we left with a prayer and headed to english class. It was SUCH a long day. Also, I taught English class. I seem to always teach it. It's great. hahahahaha

Well I love you all a lot! 

Love you! Love, Hermana Lancaster