Sunday, December 18, 2016

Feliz Navidad!

Feliz Navidad!!

I am so excited for Christmas this upcoming week!! 

This week flew by and was so crazy. I am trying to adjust to a different kind of missionary life..We spent most of the week in the office this week and were only able to work for about 3 or 4 hours every day! It is definitely an adjustment but I figure that its a blessing too because I get to work close to President Poncio. Sometimes in our meetings he will just stop and share a spiritual experience with us and I will just feel so lucky to be able to work with him.

This week we did something a little different with the training the new leaders in the mission! We invited ALL the leaders and some future leaders in the mission and did two different meetings, the elders and the sisters separated. So Hermana Zafra and I were in charge of planning the meeting with the Sisters! We focused a lot on the Savior and why we are here as missionaries. Hermana Poncio shared some experiences from her mission. In one of them she said that in her training her and her companion prayed in the street to be guided by the spirit to find someone that was prepared. So her companion had her choose the house that they contacted and when they talked to the man he told them he was Jehovahs Witness. But he had never heard of the Book of Mormon and told them that if they came back in one week He would read the book cover to cover and let them know what he thought. They hesitated because they didnt know if he would actually read it, but when they returned to the house a week later he told them that He had read the whole book and that he wanted to be baptized. My eyes filled with tears as she told us of this experience! God has not ceased to be a God of miracles.

We had a mission service day and went to clean a capilla with all the people in the office! It was the dirtiest capilla i had ever seen...but we left it sparkling clean! I am so grateful that my mom taught me how to clean. 😝

Anyways, with next sunday being Christmas I wont write because I will be SKYPING my cute little fam. I hope everyone has such a wonderful Christmas and remembers that He is the reason for the season! I know that Christ lives. I know that He is the only person that has the power to redeem us. To lift us when we fall, and to walk with us back into the presence of the Father. I love him with all my heart and soul. I know that My Redeemer Lives!

and last—a HAPPY TO MY SISTER LUNDY who has her birthday this week!  I LOVE YOU LUNBUN!!


Hermana Willes

Playing at President's desk while
waiting for a meeting to start

Love giving Service!

President's Whiteboard--the magic day!!

In the office with Elder Lee and Hermana Zafra

Monday, December 12, 2016

Elder Ochoa

Hey Everyone!

I hope that everyone had a great week! This week was so special to be with Elder Ochoa. On Tuesday we had the big meeting where are the newbies got their trainers. It was so fun to see all of them so excited to get to work! Afterwards my companion and I spent the night in Esteli with one of the couples from the US that are serving here because on Wednesday we had the first MultiZone with Elder Ochoa! The multi zone was SO great but something so embarrassing happened....

So during lunch time everyone was eating..except for Elder Ochoa and President Poncio. Well Hermana Zafra and I didnt think that was fair so we asked President Poncio if we should bring them their lunch and he told us YES! Wohoo! We were so happy to help. So we go back and bring them the normal food that everyone was eating..plastic plates and styrofoam problem there right? So as we are giving Elder Ochoa and his wife the food President is looking at us weird and Hermana Ponio calls out to my comp as we are walking away but we didnt hear here. Well we go back to the members that were preparing the food and they take out these beautiful ceramic plates and huge tall glasses full of juice. Oops. The members got so mad at us because we took him the wrong food! But we didnt know that they had other plates and nice glasses for him so he ate off of a plastic plates like the missionaries. OOPS. The good thing was he was too hungry to even notice. But that will defenitely be a moment to remember...I will never forget the faces of those members when they realized what we had done.

Other than that the week has been good!! Managua is SO HOT and I am melting a little bit each day but I love our area. Hermana Zafra is an incredible missionary and I am so excited to work with her this change! We are praying for miracles and looking for a family to baptize.

Love you all so much! And shout out to my parents because this week is their anniversary! Arent they just the best couple ever? I love them so much and I am so grateful for their example to me! One day I will have a marriage like theirs!


Hermana Willes

All the sister training leaders

Elders Leaders' Conference

With my companion, Hermana Zafra

With President Poncio and Elder Ochoa

Monday, December 5, 2016



PUES...this last week in Jinotega was CRAZY SNAKES. haha crazy snakes. Favorite phrase that I have learned on my mission :) I loved working with Hermana Amado. On Saturday we heard about our CHANGES....and so President Poncio called me. He says, Hermana Willes, you have a new assignment this change! The Lord has called you to be the Sister Training Leader of the Nicaragua Managua North Mission! ......I didnt say anything I was so shocked! and He goes...Is that ok Hermana! Haha I was SHOCKED and so Humbled. I told Him that if the Lord wanted me to do it of course I would do it. So yesterday I came to Managua and I am here with my new companion Hermana Zafra. We are so excited to work together this change and throw fire! We share the area with another companionship of sisters so they can work in the area while we travel with President sometimes.

Tonight we get all the new hermanas that are coming and I am so excited to meet them! Also this week Elder Ochoa is coming to speak to the mission and Hermana Zafra told me that we are going to dinner with Him and President Poncio! Wohoo! I am so nervous about this new calling but also excited. I know that I will have to rely on the Lord alot. Good thing he is all powerful!

This week my trainer, Hermana Walborn, goes home!! We are so blessed because we will be able to spend her last night together here in Managua. I'm sure it will be full of tears and telling stories. I am so grateful to have made a best friend here on the mission. :) The Lord really knows what is best! And I know that people come into our lives for a reason. #cueWICKEDmusic

I hope you are all doing well and are excited for CHRISTMAS!! I know that I am!!! :)


Hermana Willes

Ready to Go!!
Excited for the new opportunity!

Monday, November 28, 2016

A Mac and Cheese Thanksgiving

Hola Hola!

I hope that everyone had an awesome Thanksgiving! My companion and I celebrated with kraft macaroni and cheese. haha :) I am so grateful to be a missionary and to have such an awesome family that supports me back home. And of course I am so grateful for the gallo pinto that I was able to eat for lunch on thanksgiving! Totally beats football and stuffing. :)

This week was a little sad because Digna and Junieth left to work in the mountain so they couldn't be baptized. :( Me and my companion were a little sad but we have the faith that they will come back really soon and enter the waters of baptism! It kind of stinks that as missionaries we cant take away peoples agency sometimes..haha but what can you do? They went to go get money to pay for their house and I know that when they come back they will get baptized!! :)

This week we have a zone activity in a place called Selva Negra :) We went hiking and saw monkeys! woohoo! Here are some pictures of the zone and the cool places we found.

The hurricane turned out to be a dud here in didn't even rain. haha. but we have powder to make milk if it hits us a little bit late! :) But we are all safe and sound here.

This week we have changes and we will see where the Lord wants me to be! I know that He knows best, so where He puts me I will give all my heart, might, mind and strength. :)

Love you all!


Hermana Willes

Zone Activity in Selva Negra

No Caption Needed...

Beautiful Nicaragua

Monday, November 21, 2016

It's Cold!!


This week FLEW by. I dont even know where the time is going.

We had our interviews with President Poncio in Matagalpa this week! It was so great. President is such an inspired man. He told me about some of the miracles He saw as a missionary. I felt really close to him when we were in there together, and I felt the spirit testify to me that He is called of God to be my mission president.

This week it has been getting SO COLD in Jinotega! On Sunday I wore two sweaters to church..and the other night I was walking around in a winter coat that a member lent me! :) Who would have thought that Nicaragua can get a little cold? Crazy snakes!

On Tuesday a member, Junior, left on his mission! He went to Guatemala. He used to always work with us and it has been really weird without him this week! But I know that he is KILLING it over there and He is gonna be such a great missionary!

There is a quote by Elder Oaks that says, "Our Savior experienced and suffered the fulness of all mortal challenges 'according to the flesh' so that He could know 'according to the flesh' how to succor (which means to give aid or relief to) His people according to their infirmities. He therefore knows our struggles, our heartaches, our temptations, and our suffering, for He willingly experienced them as an essential part of His atonement. And because of this, His atonement empowers Him to succor us-to give us the strength to bear it all.'

Also Elder Paul V. Johnson said, "He can make us whole no matter what is broken in us." I testify that this is true. Sometimes we feel alone, broken, or like a part of us is missing. But like the parable in the bible about him finding the lost sheep, He will find us and make us whole again. By feeling His love, we will realize our true divinity as sons and daughters of the Almighty God. He does not leave us alone in our trials, but is there with us every step of the way.

I love all of  You!  Have  a great a week!

--Hermana Willes

Junior leaving for his mission

Cold, in Nicaragua??? What??

This is what I'm trying to do...change Nicaragua,
one Nica at a time

Monday, November 14, 2016

Be a Little Better

Hola Hola!

This week FLEW BY. Seriously i dont know where all the time is going!

Yesterday we had the District Conference in Matagalpa (like stake conference) and it was so great. Junieth and Digan came and LOVED IT. They are preparing to be baptized next week and we are super excited for them. They were all ready to go when we got to their house on Sunday morning..such a blessing.

Hermana Amado and I have been running around like crazy doing divisions and going to Managua for the New Missionaries meeting! She is such a great sport about always having to travel. I love her so much! 

I read a parable in the Bible this week that I loved. Its in Luke 19 and it talks about a man named Zacchaeus. He was a really short man so when Jesus came walking through the streets, he had to climb a tree so that he was able to see Christ. In our district meeting this week we related it to our testimonies and our acts of conversion. Sometimes we need to elevate ourselves a little more or consecrate ourselves a little more to be able to see Christ. And once we start to give a little more, we will climb that tree and we will be able to see Christ better in our lives. We will be closer to Him and be a little bit more like Him. I love this story because we can always do something a little better or give a little more. I love being a missionary because that is my goal everyday, so do a little more and be a little better. :)

This week we have interviews with President Poncio. I am so excited to talk to Him! He is such an inspired man.

I know that the Savior lives and He is the head of this church. I know that being a missionary is the best thing I have ever done! I always joke with the new missionaries about switching time with them so I can be here for longer and they always look at me and are like SERIOUSLY?! haha. but really. I love being a missionary more than words can say. :)

Have a great week!

- - 

Hermana Willes

PS.  also..ive started singing christmas hymns in our lessons. YAY CHRISTMAS!

Our View

I love my companion

I love being a missionary!

Monday, November 7, 2016

Nicaragua is Sacred Ground

Hola Hola! Como estan?

This week was so great! Emily, one of our investigators got baptized!! Yay!! Her husband got baptized about a month ago but she just barely had her baby and has been waiting to recover. She was really worried about the water temperature so we went to the church really early to boil water to mix in the font..but it didnt work! But she is such a champ that she did it anyways :) Her husband baptized her. They are the cutest couple and we were so excited for her. She came to church yesterday just beaming with the biggest smile. I love working with families because they just are so special to Heavenly Father. :)

This week we have had to be home at 7:30 because of elections so we have been running around like crazy snakes trying to visit all of our investigators. We are working with a mom and her daughter and they are planning on getting baptized next week! Their names are Digna & Junieth. We are having a District conference on Sunday in Matagalpa and they are SO excited to see the church in Matagalpa. They are the cutest! We taught them the Plan of Salvation this week and they just loved it. Junieth feels like a little sister to me and she reminds me of my little sister, Abby. I love teaching them! Keep them in your prayers.

Since we have more time to study at night I have been reading a book of quotes that my mom sent me from President Eyring. One that I love says, "The Lord doesnt put us through this test just to give us a grade, He does it because the process will change us." I did divisions this week with another newbie that got here two weeks ago named Hermana Jensen. She is from New Jersey and is so incredible. As I was talking to her, I was reminded of who I was when I first came to the misison and who I am now. Obviously there are still a lot of things I need to change and want to change, but I know that The Lord has helped me grow so much here in my mission, and for that Nicaragua will always be sacred ground for me.

I also have permision to call Ernesto and His family (my converts in Ocotal) tonight because Genesis, their youngest daughter, is turning 8 this week and will be baptized. I am SO excited to talk to them and see how they are doing!!! :) 

Love you all so much! Have a great week!


Hermana Willes

The Beatles in Nicaragua

Emily's Baptism

Love Her!

Monday, October 31, 2016

My New Hermana


I picked up my lovely daughter this week! Her name is Hermana Amado and she is from Oklahoma! She was raised in Mexico, which means she speaks perfect spanish (yay!) and she is just killing it here in Jinotega. She has such a special light and is a fabulous missionary.

The meeting in managua where we picked up our newbies ended late so when we got to the bus station things were NUTS. One of my zone leaders, Elder Diaz, is training a new elder from the States, and the poor thing was so lost. The funnies thing was that during all the madness, the guys actually put one of the new Elder's suitcases in the wrong bus!! And the bus was pulling out!! So the poor elder looks and me and goes, "Um, hermana, they just put my suitcase in that bus and I dont think we are going in the bus." The look on his face was PRICELESS. I went running after the bus and Elder Diaz goes, "Hermana Willy, where are you going?" (in spanish) And so im like trying to explain as I run..haha but I saved the elders suitcase! After wards we were all laughing so hard. The bus station is always crazy but even though the new elder was a little shaken up I was like, "Well Elder, theres your first story to write your family. You almost lost your suitcase on the first day." hehe

So this week we have started to work with Xochils brother and his family. They came to church yesterday and i LOVE THEM so much! Also an hermana named Digna and her daughter Junieth. Pray for them that they will continue to progress.

I LOVE this work. SO MUCH.

Until next week!


Hermana Willes

My new companion, Hermana Amado

Having fun!

With our lunch cita

Seeing Hermana Walborn!

Monday, October 24, 2016

A Wedding and a Baptism

This week was FULL OF MIRACLES.

We had a multi zone in Esteli and before the meeting the APs sent out a text telling us that President was going to randomly choose someone to give a 10 minute talk so everyone had to prepare. I was like oh he wont choose me..well...HE DID! haha he was like ok now we are going to hear Hermana Willes..oops. But i think it went ok :) 

Also, after we got back from the multi zone we were running around like chickens with our heads cut off on Friday trying to get everything ready for Xochil & Harvin's wedding and baptism on Saturday. On Tuesday they told us that they wanted to get baptized! I cried I was so happy. We thought we had a lawyer to marry them, but when we called him on Friday he fell we were running around all of Jinotega trying to get a laywer one day before. Also, in all of the madness I accidentally left our keys to the house inside the house..oops. (first picture: harvin saving us and opening our door when we were locked out) Luckily God is a God of miracles so we were able to find a lawyer, order the cake, and everything for Saturday.

Saturday was a day of pure BLISS. hehe. I had my first wedding in the mission and afterwards Xochil & Harvin got baptized! I let Xochil borrow one of my dresses and she looked amazing! They were both SO happy. We had the wedding in the house of the lawyer and the reception in the church. We had a Proclamation to the World in a picture frame and we printed a picture of them too so they could remember how important the family is and how important THEIR family is :) For their baptism we went to Matagalpa and had a Tarde Blanca with all the missionaries in Jinotega and Matagalpa. There were so many people and it was so beautiful to see all these beautiful people make their first convenant with God!

This week I have just been so happy because I know that Xochil & Harvin are truly chosen people. And my cute comp, Hermana Alfaro, was able to see their baptism. We got news of changes and I will actually be training again. My comp went to Puerto Cabezas! I will pick up my daughter (greenie) tomorrow in Managua. I am SHOCKED that I am training again. If I train one more time I will be tied with my mom in how many kids we have. :) hehe only i did it in a year and a half! :) just kidding mom.

God is Good!  Love you all!


Hermana Willes

Getting back into our apartment

The Wedding

I love them!

So happy for this family

Baptism Night

In White

Monday, October 17, 2016

How to Fish


I hope everyone is doing GREAT because this week just flew by but was so amazing! We are working so hard with Harvin & Xochilt, the couple we found about 3 weeks ago. They are INCREDIBLE. Every night they are waiting for us and they both read in the Books of Mormon, sing the hymns, and the lessons are so full of the spirit. They are so accepting of everything we teach them and I feel at home when I am with them. They were so excited about church on Sunday and when they came it was so special! They got there a little late because they had to walk from their house (really far) with their baby Justin (cutest baby ever) and so a couple minutes into the meeting my companion and I received the impression to go outside and wait for them. As we walked out they were entering the gate to the church! Afterwards, Xochilt called us angels because she was scared to walk in alone. They stayed for all 3 hours and said they are excited to come this week too. They are SO special! This week we have focused a lot on marriage and how that would help them as a family. We just finished a great lesson with them. We read the Proclamation with them and Harvin was so excited about the church. They are so special :)

It has been raining like CRAZY SNAKES here in Jinotega. The mud on the mountains is crazy. We have changes this week but I’m pretty sure I will be staying. Yay! hahaha i want to stay in this great area. :)

Yesterday in sacrament meeting an hermana shared that the best way to help someone isn’t by giving them a fish, but teaching them how to fish. As soon as she said it I thought of my Dad! My dad ALWAYS uses that phrase: Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man how to fish, feed him for a lifetime :) It is so true. I am trying to teach my investigators how to fish by having them feel the spirit in our lessons so that when we aren’t with them they can study the scriptures and eat some spiritual fish on their own! I know that if i am working with the spirit i am a sucessful missionary!

I love you all so much!! 



Hermana Willes

Xochilit, Harvin and Baby Justin

The Book of Mormon in her hand!!

The mud on my legs...
what happens everyday :/

Monday, October 10, 2016

It's Raining!!!


This week FLEW by. I still cant believe that this change is almost over. Like…WHAT?

So this week we had interviews with President Poncio! He is so amazing. When he asked me when I finished my mission I said, oh President. NEVER! hehe. He laughed at that. But he gave me some really good advice that I am going to put into practice! He is an inspired man.

So this week we have just been slipping and sliding down the mountain because it is raining sooooo hard every day. My shoes are all soaked and smell horrible :) Love it. We have started working with a couple named Xochilt and Harvin and they rock. Their baby is really sick right now so keep them in your prayers! They are so cool.

I also got the new Liahona this month YAY and loved reading it. President Monson said, When God speaks and we obey, we will always be right. I LOVE that quote because we should never doubt what the Prophets say or the scriptures or the Spirit, because if we follow them we will never be led astray. Also Harold B. Lee said, If we are not reading the scriptures daily, our testimonies are growing thinner. That sentence really makes you want to read the scriptures doesn’t it? haha. I love the scriptures and the difference they have made in my life!



Hermana Willes

Pictures of our Area...

Mom Note:  Looking at these pictures, the words of President Russell M. Nelson’s most recent conference talk come to my mind…. “My dear brothers and sisters, the joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives."  

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

General Conference Rocks!


Sorry I am writing late.  Yesterday the power was out in all of Jinotega so we couldnt write! Woops! But here we are.

This week was so great! General Conference rocks :) I loved hearing all of the messages of the apostles and general authorities of the church. They truly are so led by the Spirit. 

On Saturday we watched conference in our church with the tablet of a member..haha. We went to go pick up one of our investigators on Saturday morning and it was so funny. She lives (of course) in the middle of the mountain and so usually we have to get to her house through this little path but on Saturday there were these dogs there..dogs that bite. So we just stood in the backyard (?) of another house and we were like we will just wait for you here hermana! And she was like Oh i cant go..but come over here so we can chat. We were like NOOOO she isn’t going to come? We were so sad. But the neighbors showed us the other path so we could get to her house and when we got there she whispers and goes, Dont worry I told you guys i would go and so I will go. I just don’t want them to know I am leaving the house because they might rob me! hahahah we were like..oh...ok! So she made us go lie to the neighbors saying that she wasnt going to go with us. TOO FUNNY….

Anyways, something that I loved from Conference was Elder Redlunds talk. He was talking about how the Spirit teaches us gospel truths and that is how we gain our testimonies. But sometimes we forget the experiences we have had, and He just said, DONT FORGET. Please. Dont forget. The emotion behind his words was just so touching! I know that it is so easy for us to forget. But when we do the little things that fuel the flames of our testimonies, we will never forget.

I hit one year in the mission this week. One year of doing the best thing possible here on this earth. Inviting others to come unto Christ through faith, repentance and baptism. I know that the Savior has walked with me every step in the last year. I am excited for the next 6 months to see what the Lord has in store for me!


Hermana Willes

Candlelight Dinner because
the power was out!

Hermanas at General Conference in Matagalpa

Enjoying lunch between sessions

Monday, September 26, 2016

God is a God of Miracles


PUES this week ROCKED :) Every week in the mission rocks but this week was especially rockin. At the beginning of the week we didn’t have ANY possibilities for baptism. Hermana Alfaro and I decided to focus on one of our investigators that we hadn’t seen in a while named Julio, but he wasn’t answering his phone. Finally on WEDNESDAY he answered and we were able to go to his house on Friday. He lives really far because our area is HUGE but we made it out there to go talk to him. When we got there he told us, "I don’t want to get baptized! God isn’t listening to my prayers and baptism just doesn’t call my attention." My companion and I just listened to how he was feeling and then asked him more questions to see what he was really thinking. Then we explained that really the Lord was listening, that that if he showed the Lord that he had a willing and obedient heart, the Lord would bless him with the things He needed. We invited him to be baptized the next day! haha.  Then he started telling us the story of how that morning he had prayed to Heavenly Father and said that if the sister missionaries passed by he would do what they said because they would bring an answer to his prayer. And he told us that he would be baptized!!!!!!! Hermana Alfaro and I both CRIED. It was such a spiritual moment. We had been praying and working ALL WEEK for a miracle and of course we saw one because God is God of Miracles. The day of his baptism was so special! :)

I am loving Jinotega so much. The people are so sweet and I’ve already gotten used to climbing mountains. This week is general conference WOOHOO the best part of the whole year. I am so excited the hear the words of our living prophet. I told my mom that my parents raised me right because I am very passionate about General Conference :) I know that when the Prophet and his Apostles are speaking, Heavenly Father is giving us council that we need to hear right now in this day and age. (hoy en dia?)  I testify that they have all been called of God, and the only way that we can hold on to the iron rod is by listening to their words.

I love you allll!!! have a great week with pajama church!!! :)


Hermana Willes

Julio's Baptism

I'm so excited to have a church building!

The missionaries

Monday, September 19, 2016

I Am So Grateful For My Testimony!


Well I LOVE my new area!! It is SO big and SO different. I feel like a greenie again and I love it. It has rained pretty much every day and we climb literally. I fell down a mountain my first day of working and my and my companion were just laughing because i was taking baby steps down and woooosh down i went :) We come home every night with mud caked on our shoes and shivering from the cold. It doesn't really feel like i am in Nicaragua! I love it so much though! And the CAPILLA is beautiful. It was so weird to have church in an actual church yesterday but i loved it. Even though we have a building it is kind of like Ocotal in the way that i still had to speak because the speakers didn't show up..but i loved it! I felt just at home. :)

Thank you ALL for the birthday wishes! I had such a great day. It was a little strange to be out working all day...Hermana Poncio called us around 7 and I looked at my companion and was like..uhhh why is the mission presidents wife calling us? and she was like..uhh I don't know? So i made her pick it up and then when she passed it to me and I was like OH NO what did I do wrong? haha but she just wanted to wish me happy birthday. :) President talked to me too. It was so nice of them to call! They are wonderful.

We found this MIRACLE woman named Marlene this week. She is all excited to be baptized and came to church all on her own on Sunday. She is golden! 

I hope that everyone is just loving life because I am :). I found this quote by Elder Bednar that says, Conversion is an offering of self, of love, and of loyalty we give to God in gratitude for the gift of a testimony. I am soooooo grateful for the testimony I have gained throughout my life and I am trying my best to offer everything I have to the Lord. Yesterday was such a good birthday, to be able to give everything to the Lord on a day that is usually focused on yourself. As I left Hermana Gould before changes I told her, I know that Im not the perfect missionary or trainer, but I do know that I have taught you the most important thing, and that is to love the mission. because I LOVE THE MISSION. Sometimes i just stand in awe of how lucky we are to be given such sacred experiences where we can learn so much. If anyone is ever contemplating a mission...GO.

I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the true and only true church on the earth. I will never tire of saying the words..somos misioneras de la iglesia de JesuCristo de los santos de los ultimos dias..que hacen los domingos ustedes? :)

nos vemos! les quiero mucho!


Hermana Willes

Saying good-bye to Hermana Chow

Hermana Alfara (my comp) and me
in front of our beautiful Capilla!

In front of our house...

Zone Activity