November 26, 2013

9 Months Out!


Crazy week, with Hermana Gutierrez in Concepción for a new-missionary training session. She was there for three days, so I stayed in Centro with Hermana Miskin and Peterson. We had a really good time, and ran around everywhere trying to cover four sectors with one big Gringo companionship. Played piano for a special musical number in our district conference with them, and they sang beautifully. Ooh, and I forgot how nice it feels to play prelude/postlude. Sister Fisher- thank you for teaching me how to play piano, and Mom- thank you for making me stay in there until I could play all the hymns. It brought a great peace to my soul to hear some of those familiar hymns that aren't quite as common here in Latin America. On the other hand, we have La Luz de La Verdad and Oíd El Toquid de Clarin, which I am going to miss like crazy when I get back to the states. We sing them just about every Sunday!

Hermana Gutierrez is really progressing! She is starting to take more initiative in lessons, she hasn't cried hardly at all this week, and she was a champion this week in some mini divisions that we had to do. Even though she only has three weeks here, she bucked up, took a member with her, and went to teach a lesson all by herself when we were crunched for time. She also went out contacting with the other new hermanas while we gringas were practicing our song, and she came back so excited! "Hermana, I taught THEM how to contact! Remember how you taught me to stand in front in people that are walking fast in the street? They didn't know that, and I was like, What are you Moms teaching you?" hahaha Oh, I laughed and laughed, and felt very glad for her. She's a good one.

This Saturday and Sunday we had district conference (hence the musical number), but we didn't have any investigators with us, and we were missing a lot of people from the branch. I sat on the bus to Parral, feeling a big discouraged and pondering on my mission. (Why so much pondering, you might ask? Well, in case you haven't been counting, this week is my 9 month mark. OH MY GOODNESS I HAVE ALREADY BEEN A MISSIONARY FOR 9 MONTHS???!! STOP IT!!! DON´T EVEN SAY IT!!! Don't you even dare start thinking about coming to pick me up, yet!!! Hold your horses, people!!!!) Well the point is that I thought for a moment, and then came to this conclusion.

(Quote from my study journal)
"It is moments like this when I show God what kind of  missionary I am. Will I lose the faith when the skies get gray? No! We work harder, we put our shoulder to the wheel, we set appointments and make calls and study and do contacts and do EVERYTHING we can to push God's work along. I will push to the end with a perfect faith that God will guide us in His work. I so much prefer to look forward with faith than to cast my eyes around wondering what I´m doing wrong. I love this gospel SO much. It is everything to me- my life, my love, my everyday walk and talk. It is my hope and anchor when life gets rough, my tender gift to those I love."

That is the truth, people. This is all my heart and soul, and I am SO happy here. I hope you are as well! All my prayers-


Hermana Oldroyd
Hermana Gutierrez and Erica
Hermana Carmen Rosa, one of our best sisters. She is opening a little gift shop in her home, and we went to help her set up. I also learned how to make gift bags out of wrapping paper. Cool!!!

Mini Gringo Cambio! Recent convert from Cauquenes Centro- Would you blame me if I told you he reminded me so much of Grandpa Glazier that I cried in our lesson with him? It probably also made a difference that when we sang a hymn to him, we had some sweet harmony going on and the spirit was really strong. LOVE the gospel, and I LOVE knowing that my family will be together forever.

Yeah, I bought those sunglasses, but then Elder Dumm told me they were too big. Awwww. Thats ok, I´ll just burn my eyes out here while Ana Maria enjoys my sunglasses.
and Playing soccer.

November 18, 2013

Celestial Apartment

Dear Family and Friends,

1. We had a college cleaning check flashback this week when our Zone Leader called us in the middle of the day- "Hermanas! The Baldens (a senior missionary couple) are coming up to inspect the houses! If you want to keep your PDay, get over there and do some tidying!" So we arranged the schedule a bit and hustled over to the house. They checked us that night, and guess what?? We earned a Celestial Apartment award and some candy along with it. They've only given one other in all the houses north of Chillan (which is a lot), so I felt pretty good about all the window scrubbing we'd done in the last month. She declared us almost completely mold free! Yes!

2. Hermana Gutierrez is from Guatemala, just in case I didn't tell you that last week. Thought of you, Mom!

3. I think we've finally gained some ground with President Raiqueo, our branch president. He called us this week and asked if we could come to a Family Night with him and his family that night. On the way to his house, he explained that his wife is having a major struggle with her faith, and that he wanted us to share a message to help her. We had a good time playing with the stick bugs on his back porch, then we sang, prayed, and had a really spiritual lesson about the trials of our faith (Ether 12) and the miracles that come after.

4. I LOVE teaching. Last week I got to give a talk, teach the youth Sunday School class, and then teach Young Women. It was the best!!

5. We are out of time again...

6. I love you all so much! I love the gospel so much, and know that the Lord is so present in our lives. If you find yourself struggling more than necessary in life, put more trust in the power of the Lord's Atonement. Believe that it can work for you, even in your imperfections, impatience, and imprudence. The ability to apply the Atonement to our own lives is one of the most powerful tools that we can wield as members of this faith, as friends and family who seek to help others, and as growing children of God. It is the most important thing that I have learned on my mission.

I love you all!!!

Hermana Oldroyd

Did I upload this picture before? We visited a family of all boys after doing service  and had some fun playing with a lizard. Hermana Nájera tried to take a picture like this after, but the little thing ran up her neck and got tangled in her hair. She screamed and screamed, and we all laughed and laughed....

Ahh!! I don't remember if I told you this... HAHA! Hermana Berta and Arturo bought two dolls and named them after Hermana Nájera and me.... Say Hello to Hermana Oldroyd Junior

Gipsy tent! They're called "jitanas" here. They have a horrible reputation, but we talked to them in the street and they were nice, so we went and taught them a lesson! Did you know they're their own race, and that they have their own language? It was fascinating.

 Don't think there is anything better than a peanut butter package.... YES!
I Love AnnaLeesa Rowley!

This was supposed to look like I was eating it, but the bug moved right as we took the picture, so I'm half screaming from surprise here. Woops!

Stick bug!! That was cool- thought you'd like this, Dad!

November 12, 2013

Love being a missionary

My dear people-

Once again, this will be a short one. My companion got sick with really bad cramps (I feel much more prepared now to comfort someone who is giving birth.) and we spent most of the day in the house.

Good news is that we had a zone activity this morning and played soccer! Haven't done THAT in about ten years, but I scored two goals, had an assist, and played goalie. (Shout out, Sydney!) That was great fun, and I will be very sore tomorrow.

Nicole got baptized this weekend! It was a beautiful baptism service, my first double baptism! The Elders also baptized a cute 11 year old. Even if the baptismal font overflowed again, even if we started late, even if we spent hours in the morning cleaning the chapel and downloading Mormon Messages to show in between the changing period, it all turned out really well. Nicole was so happy, and gave me a big, wet hug after coming out of the font. She also pulled me aside later that night and said "Hermana, I want to give you something. All of my friends and relatives have tried to steal it from me, but I want you to have it." And then she passed me her favorite ring, shiny steel and diamond studded. She wears it always, and I just about cried. It was so tender, and she is very special to me.

Hermana Gutierrez is a chipper, low-key woman, and I love her. She has missed her family a bit, and doesn't love talking to people in the street, but she has a great attitude and is willing to work. She really wants to be here, which is what counts, and she learns fast. We'll be working some miracles soon! Actually we've seen many, and I was going to write you about them, but there isn't time!

I love you all. I LOVE being a missionary and I am so happy, even when I'm crazy stressed or busy or a little overwhelmed. The Savior is ALWAYS the answer, and I know that He loves each one of us. How blessed we are to partake in His saving ordinances and work toward an eternal goal. Love you!!

Hermana Oldroyd

November 4, 2013


Well, this is a new low.

Literally have no time to write you all an email, and I'm so sorry!!!

Today is cambios, and Hermana Nájera is going to Barrio Norte, a sector very close to Concepción. I'm very bummed that she is going- I love her so much. I'll be training again, and my companion's name (I peeked and saw it on the computer.) is Hermana Gutierrez. Yeah!!!!! Another Latina!!! At least, I think so. We'll see! We'll travel to Conce early tomorrow morning, then be back in Estación ready to work.

Um, that is all. I love you and know that the gospel is true. I love being a missionary!!!
Hermana Oldroyd

THAT is the pile of weeds that we and the Elders pulled from AnaMaria's front yard. Oh boy


After one of our little P-Day games. It is called ´Señor Palito´and is quite a scream. I'll teach it to you when I get home!

Also an old photo- September 18, helping Mari peel tomatoes. They do everything by hand, and boy, that was a bit tedious! But I must say, my knife skills are seriously improving. I open cans without a second thought now, and the whole peeling deal has also improved a lot.

Karishna, a joven that the Elders are about to baptize, her friend, me, and Hermana Gaby Gaete Mena

A Movie Night that we hosted. We watched God's Army (my first time seeing it), and yes, I cried. It was great fun!