Two posts in a day!

Today, we were off to a campo (rural territory) giving out the invitations for the Memorial. It was a photogenic little place, not to far off from the town and close to the beach, and it was filled with a bunch of things that scream "Dominican Republic Campo" so I just wanted to share some of the pictures I got to take. 

I wasn't planning on taking any pictures today, but when I saw this darling house, I couldn't help it. Especially when Kirsy (my friend from the Rainy Days post), who was my preaching partner for day, was color coordinated with it. This is one thing I definitely love about the houses in DR, they are so colorful! They can range from Pepto-Bismol pink to blues to really any color, as long as it's bright! I think I heard it has something to do with the sun fading the colors or something uninterestingly practical like that, but I don't care, they're adorable! 

Another thing I couldn't resist the temptation of taking a picture of was clotheslines, haha. Yep, clotheslines. It was so sunny and hot (HOT!) that everyone was doing the washing today, I had to control myself to not take boring pictures of clotheslines. I'm telling you, this place was crazy photogenic (or maybe I was just shutter happy) that even the clotheslines looked amazing!

Here we are tract-flashing. First is David, an elder from the congregation and me and the second is from left to right, is Alba, Gisella, a special pioneer from Puerto Rico and Kirsy.

You wouldn't think anyone lived here but most of the time an unfinished house is the perfect choice for Haitian immigrants. Too bad there were no Creole invites to give them but soon there will be! The Creole class is set up to start in one to two months. 

Oh yeah, we also found a well! I don't think I had ever seen a real life well before but here it was. It would have been very biblical feeling if it wasn't for the bucket and the rusty tin cover but oh well...  

I almost forgot to introduce our new visitor in the congregation. Everyone meet Aric. He's from Washington State and is about two weeks in his two month stay. :)

Bright houses again! There's Aric and Cesar, our other special pioneer and Gisella's husband.


Here's another cool experience. 

About a month ago, I was on my way to a friend's house and I stopped by a small office supply store to print out something for my dad. The printer guy, a boy about my age, told me to step behind the counter. When I did I spied in the trash bin a brand new Watchtower Magazine! It was the November edition, the one about the three lies that make God seem unlovable. It wasn't even creased and even though, I hesitated a bit, I finally swooped down, grabbed the magazine and told the guy that he shouldn't throw magazines aways, even though we give them out for free, the magazines cost money and that he should know since he deals with the printing at the store. 
One of his friends came up to the desk and asked me if I was a Jehovah's Witness and the guy behind the desk claimed that the magazine was already in the bin when he started his shift. I proceeded to tell them that when a Witness offers a magazine, if they aren't going to read them, that they should say so, so we can give them to someone who will. That is a big issue here in DR. People feel bad refusing magazines or publications because they are afraid that it would look like they are refusing God's word, so they take them and little ways off, the dump them somewhere. 
I was about to leave with the magazine and kind of starting to feel like maybe I was "scolding" too much, when the kid behind the desk stopped me and told me to leave the magazine so he could read it and his friend said he would read it too and not only that, but pass it on to others for them to read. I was obviously happy and while waiting for my prints, I mentioned the highlights of the magazine. 

Flash forward and today while preaching and as we pass by the the same office supply store, my preaching partner starts telling me the same story I just told you. I tell her it was me and to my surprise she tells me that because of what happened, the guy that was behind the desk has started to study the bible! Apparently something in the magazine caused his interest to flare up. This Very Nice Thing left me Very Happy. It reminds me of how the Faithful Slave are always reminding us to be Witnesses 24/7 because we never know when something we do or something we say will cause someone to take in interest in the truth. 

Anyway, that was the Very Nice Thing I wanted to share. :) 


Hi again, I feel like it's been forever since I posted anything but things have been really jumping these past two months. Between strikes, illness, the light going out 3x a week, CO visit, assemblies, schoolwork and getting my hours in, these past two months have been busy, busy, busy.

These days it's also been raining a bunch but that doesn't stop us from going out in service! My friend, Kirsy (who unfortunately forgot to take a picture of herself), my sister and I went out for early morning service. There are decidedly less people out on the streets but we still find a few people out there, usually motorists trying to seek shelter from the rain.

Halfway through battling the morning weather, it began to rain especially hard and we were forced to seek shelter in a covered front of a restaurant. There were four other people with the same idea and we took the opportunity to witness to them. I had an especially nice conversation with one man with the "Can the dead really live again?" tract. He told me he didn't believe that they could because his mother died earlier this year and he hadn't seen her since. Since we were both stranded because the rain, we had a really nice chat and I was able to read him a couple of texts showing what Jehovah is going to do in the future and analyze the rest of the tract with him. 

After getting ourselves thoroughly wet, we went to go visit ASL for their Watchtower Study. Denise's, one of the sisters who interpret the meetings, father was visiting and was going to give a special talk in English. There was a nice attendance of 20 something, which is pretty amazing for a small group of 4 witnesses. For the first time since moving to DR, I was cold during the meeting, I was wet and the fans were at full blast, but it was heartwarming to see the deaf visitors nod and really understand what was being "said". 

The deaf people here in the DR, especially those who don't live in the cities or big towns, extremely appreciate the effort we make to reach them, much more, I think, than in the States or other "developed" countries. Here there are very, very few schools for the deaf (the closest one from Nagua is 2 hours away!) and very, very few deaf people know how to communicate with each other or others. Too little people learn ASL and those who don't they grow up inventing their own sign to use with a close circuit of neighbors and family. Here in Nagua, the Witnesses are the only religion that offers any type of religious service for the deaf *fist pump* and usually the brothers and sisters have to teach their Bible students how to sign at the same time while teaching them Bible principles. 

Signing the Kingdom Melody

 Denise interpreting her father's talk

Very soon ASL isn't going to be the only foreign language group in Nagua. A couple of meetings ago, a letter was read inviting us to apply for the Haitian Creole class. It is exciting news since there are almost as many Haitians as Dominicans in Nagua and it will be excellent to finally be able to take care of that territory the way it should be.

Oooh, I almost forgot that I wanted to end this post with a great experience for those who are a little skittish in asking for donations while out in service, like myself (guilty). After having a great conversation about how God does not cause the suffering seen nowadays, my sister mentioned that our preaching work is supported by voluntary donations, the householder asked her to wait a moment. When he returned, he handed my sister a 1,000 peso-bill (about 25 U.S dollars), telling that one should give God everything. My sister tells me that she had to hold in her happy dance while she thanked the householder. Pretty good stuff, eh?

3/1/14 ~ We just had our Special Day Assembly in the Bethel Assembly Hall in Santo Domingo and, as always, it was amazingly encouraging. We were given extremely helpful tips on how to get the most out of our bible usage in field service, almost every talk had a number of interviews and experiences and we even got exciting new announcements, which I won't mention in case I ruin someone's surprise, but no new bible :(  . I didn't really think we would get the new bible in Spanish so soon, but I could hope, couldn't I? Hopefully, we'll get them in the District Assembly this summer. I have my own English copy that I stole from my grandma back in the States (muahahaha),  but I can't wait to preach with the Spanish edition and really try out the changes and additions in the ministry!

Anyhoo, back to the convention. This Special day was especially special because one of my good friends took the biggest step in her life and dedicated herself to Jehovah. She was baptized along with her stepmother and both of them were, needless to say, very, very happy.
This is Leslie ----------------------->
So many people came to see Leslie and her stepmom, Melissa, that the even attendants by the baptism pool were surprised.
 Besides her friends from the congregation, Leslie had invited all the friends and family that she could. Her grandmother, who she lives with, and her stepfather, who are both not witnesses, came to see her and stayed for the rest of the program, so they both received a good long witness to last them a good long while. She isn't wasting any time to start preaching as one of our sisters!

Another memorable occurrence: It's pretty common to have the light go out during meetings here in DR. But I have never had an outage happen during an assembly! The electricity failed right before the last verse of song 114 and it left the 3,029 attendees singing A Capella (or is it accapella?). I'm not going to say we were as good as the official JW chorus in the Kingdom Melody CDs, but we weren't so bad either. The brothers went on without missing a beat and it was a beautiful thing to hear really.

I hope you all enjoy your own Special Day Assembly :)

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