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Monday, May 19, 2014

Welcome to LOUISVILLE!

That's right! I got transferred to the Hikes area and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!!!!! I love it love it love it! And my companion is AWESOME. We get along so well and are laughing all the time. I just love it here! I can't stop talking about how much I love it!
Ok, so I work with a LOT of Cubans. It's a huge change from what I was working with in Corydon. Everyone in Corydon is from Mexico except for William. He was the only Cuban there, and I had a tough time understanding him. But here the majority of the people we work with are Cubans. I feel like I've taken a step back in Spanish again, trying to understand them. Different accent, for sure. Slowly but surely :) I LOVE listening to them though. It's so fun!!!
My area has one of the three largest refugee programs in the country, so we have TONS of different people here: lots of Cubans, Iraqis, Somalians, Indians, etc. It's amazing how many different kinds of people are here. The thing with Cubans is, they don't look Hispanic--or at least what we see when we hear hispanic. They can look Mexican, Black or White. They're a little bit of everything, but you can definitely tell they're Cuban when they start talking. It's so fun trying to guess.
We are teaching some amazing people. First we have Jose and his parents, Hidler and Josefa. They're so solid. Getting baptized in a couple weeks. Hermana Carnahan found them like 3 weeks ago. Then we have Miguelina and her 4 kids. Two of them are old enough to be baptized. They kind of happened upon her, but they are just THE SWEETEST people ever. They have the chairs set up everytime we go over. The 11 year old son is reading in the Book of Mormon by himself, and they all pray together every night. They are so special. They come running to us everytime they see us :) The hard thing is, the Dad doesn't like religion and doesn't like them to leave the house. We're doing a whole lot of praying that a miracle will happen and he'll soften his heart. They are so prepared!
The people here are great. We're always finding Hispanics every day all over the place. We've met some really kind, sweet people who are so ready to hear the Gospel. It's revitalizing! I love it! I just feel so excited about this area and about the mission. I can't wait to get out and find more people and share the Gospel with them!!! What a privilege it is to be on a mission!
Also, I'm in Hermana Lawrence's zone :) I got to see her at Zone Meeting this week!!!
Also, I'm in another branch here. La Rama Quinta. :) (5th branch) There are only two branches in the mission, and I've served in both of them now. hahaha. I'm so lucky. They asked me to give a talk in Church my first Sunday here (yesterday). It went well I think! I'm excited to meet more members and help them do missionary work. That's something our branch really needs: more member missionary work! We have to strengthen the members that we already have so they're strong enough to carry on and do missionary work themselves. Also, we have 8 missionaries in this branch (4 companionships). Wow! Different, but I love it :)
So yep!! Life is good! We're working hard with a lot of great people! I can't wait to tell you more about my experiences here because I know it's going to be a great time. So many miracles happen every day in the mission field. I feel so privileged to be working with these people and to be speaking Spanish. Hermana Carnahan and I were talking about it last night, and we just can't imagine NOT knowing Spanish and be around all these people.... I don't even know how I didn't recognize it all before the mission! There's a whole other world right here in our country. Knowing their language opens a TON of doors -- literally. :)
I love the mission :) :) :) I love being in the city! I love Louisville! Although we run into some sketchy people, I love that we can meet SO MANY people all over the place and talk to them. They're all children of God and need to know that. What a blessing!
Ok, to end this I want to share a funny experience. We were out with a recent convert, a 15 year old Cuban girl named Maylyn, and Hermana Carnahan told me to go contact some guy across the street. I started talking to him in Spanish and he said, "I don't speak Spanish." He told us, "My name is Chad. I'm from Hawaii." But he looked Chinese... and Maylyn goes, "Are you Chinese? You look like you're from China." hahahahaha. She barely speaks English, and that is what she got out. hahaha. It was the most embarrassing contact ever. The poor guy...
Life is good :) Keep it real Louisville!
Hermana Porter

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