Monday, April 28, 2014

Lavadoras, celèfonos, y menos activos‏

  Savannah Odekirk (                             
Hermana Alfaro and I have really been trying to avoid having wash all of our laundry by hand, so we asked one of our neighbors if we could pay her so we could use her washing machine. So, this morning we went down there to use it and Hermana Alfaro said, "Enseña me." "No tenía una lavadora en Costa Rica?" "Sí, teniamos pero mí mama siempre lavaba mi ropa." We put her laundry in the machine and I taught her where to put all the switches and cheque. I asked her, "Do you want to go up to the apartment wait or do you want to stand here by this machine for the next for minutes?" T owhich she replied, "Qué!!! Es 40 minutos??" She thought it would take five minutes and we would be done. Ha ha I got a pretty good kick out of it.

I went on divisions with Hermana Baird this week. Usually I love divisions because they force me to be the person who makes all the decisions, I know the area and the people. But I had only been here a few days and Hermana Baird was the hermana here right before so she actually knew the area and the people better than I did. She was the one making the decisions. It felt really weird. 

This week we´ve been trying to find more less avtive people to work with and we´ve found a montón!! We got a copy of the ward dirrectory and it has over 300 families in it!! Yet our asistencia would never show that. Our asistencia yesterday was 64!!!! The progress is already coming. I also learned this that if you want more baptisms work find new less actives, because the less active families are the ones who have nonmember friends and family. We found the familia Rodriguez and turns out their two youngest kids never got baptized so we are teaching them now. The oldest son came to church yesterday and he brought a friend! Our goal is to contact a new less active family everyday this week. 

I miss Olanchito sometimes, but I am so excited to be here in Tela. We are seeing so many milagros and we are going to see so many more.

We had a lesson with the familia Sosa and was AMAZING!!. Presidente Leiva (the branch president) came with us. Walter keeps saying that he needs to read more del Libro de Mormón before he is sure he wants to get baptized, but he also said he feels peace when he reads it. In my head I thought, "What are you saying?? Peace is your answer that this true!!!! I´ve explained this before! Ugh!!!!!!!!" But then I calmly showed him Moroni 10:5 and explained how we receive answers from the Spirit. Then Hermana Alfaro challnged them again to be batized on the 24 May and they said yes!! I am so excited for them. I think they are the cutest family I´ve met here. We just need to teach them the Palabra de Sabiduría otra vez because they gave us tea. oops. 

That night was another testament to me that teaching people how to recognize the Spirit is one of the most important things I can do. I can teach them all I want but if they can´t recognize when the Spirit is talking to them then they´ll never recognize the truth. And what Im doing is useless.

Well, that´s all for this week. Nos vemos!!

Hermana Odekirk

Hermana Alfaro and I were talking about cell phones, which is celular. And the word for telephone is teléfono. but I accidentally referred to a cell phone as a celéfono. ha ha Oh the advetures of serving foreign speaking. 

There is a HUGE differnce between morning tired and evening tired. Hay una diferncia entre I just woke up so I´m tired and I walked nine miles in 95 degree heat and have been working all day so I´m tired. I never noticed before now.


Monday, April 21, 2014

Have I mentioned I love Honduras?‏

Well guys, this week has been super exciting! Tela is great! I would say well over half of my area is paved here, so no longer feel like I just got off the pioneer treck everyday. We have only had running water in our apartment one day since I´ve been here, so it´s bucket showers with pila water for me. At least the water here is luke warm, I love it!
I am realizing that Olanchito was a lot like Utah. It is a valley surrounded by mountains. Even in Mexico I was surrounded by mountains.  It feels weird.
Sometimes I think it would be great to be serving in the states where I could have a cell phone and a car and someone to give me thanksgiving dinner, but then I go to the beach on pday and I remember that I don´t want to be anywhere except Honduras! Hermana Alfaro and I walked to the beach this morning took pictures and sat on the pier. It was super cool! Tela is so green and has tons of hills. Now that I´m over all the I´m- in-a-third-world-country shock that I got in December I am really enjoying being here in Honduras.
I  got an email from Hermana Zamora and she told me that my convert Manuel has a calling!!  He is in the young mens presidency! I am so happy for him. He is so solid.
In other news, I thought working in Bella Vista in a branch of 150 people was small but then I got to Tela where we had 53 people in sacrament meeting yesterday and my eyes were opened. Our branch president is 20 something years old. Elder Burwell and Elder Lopez blessed the sacrament and then one Deacon and guy who is about 50 passed it. The sunday school teacher for the youth didn´t come so we taught their class. We had all of the youth in the branch and there were five of them. One of Presidente Klein´s counslars came to our branch and we had a meeting with him. The first thing he said to me was, "Usted toca piano?" The hymns during sacrament meeting were pathetic and sad sounding so he is going to work on getting us a keyboard that actually works and Elder Burwell and I are going take turns playing. I should´ve practiced hymns more when I played the piano. He also said to us that we need to work with the less actives more. He said if we don´t baptize, esta bien, we don´t baptize. Elder Burwell said he wants to see this place have 100 people is sacrament meeting before he goes home in May, so I´m going to do everything I can to make that happen.
I am super excited to be here! There is so much work to be done, I´m going to get to do so much here. In the words of Hermana Holdaway, "The gospel is SO true!" Truth. Everyday my testimony of this gospel is strengthened. I am so grateful for it´s influence in my life.
Hermana Odekirk

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Pues... TUVE CAMBIOS!!!!

AAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!! Yes, you google translated that correctly! I had changes today! Holy moly. I really didn´t think I was going to go, I wasn´t prepared for it at all! I am now in a town called Tela, right on the beach. I would tell you all to google maps it but we all know only my dad will actaully do it. I haven´t really seen much of town yet, but it seems really great. It seems to be a bit richer of an area than Olanchito was and it is way more green and pretty.


My new companion is Hermana Alfaro. She is twenty and she is from Costa Rica. Yes, the same as Hermana Zamora. We´ve only had a few hours together but she seems really cool.


Changes here are absolute chaos. We got on a bus at the chapel in La Lima that took us to Progresso and dropped us off at a place where we could get a cab. Then we put four Hermanas and six suit cases in one cab and went to the bus terminal to catch the bus to Tela. Well, it´s not really much of a terminal. You just stand on the side of the road until you can hale a bus down. It was only an hour long bus ride and we stood the whole time because the bus was so crowded. I flipping love Honduras! All the chaos is so exciting.


The last few days have been crazy. I know cambios are a part of the mission. I´m probably making way more of a big deal than I should but this is my first change, so I´m going to make a bg deal out of it. It still hasn´t really hit me yet that I am in a new area. It is slightly scary. President Klein always tells me that having changes is like  being a greeenie all over again. To a certain extent he is right, but I can already see that I am handling this way better than when I first got to Olanchito. I´m excited to get to work and meet all of our investogators and find some new ones.


I had a shot of going my whole mission with running water in my apartment, but I think that I am going to be taking bucket showers during my time here in Tela. I´ve only been in for about five minutes though so I´m not sure. Also, Hermana Alfaro told me that here in Tela the hermamas are home every night by 6.30 unless we have a firm cita. That´s kind of a bummer, but I guess it gives me more time for hand washing my laundry, right?


Well guys, I´ve got to go have dinner with my new branch president (oh, and the branch here has about 50 people in it). I´m super excited to tell you guys all at how this weekend goes. Remember the church is true.



Hermana Odekirk

Monday, April 14, 2014

I'm not dead yet! Si Hombre

In January everyone told me, "Wait, until March and April when it gets really hot! The Semana Santa is unbearable!" You guys all know me, you know that I love the snow and the cold with ever fiber of my being and that I think the only good thing about summer is that then we get to enjoy it getting cold again. Needless to say, I was terrified for April to come. March came and went and it was hot! But I overcame it. Now, I´m proud to say this week is the Semana Santa and I´m not dead yet! Woo hoo! Everyone exaggerated WAY too much. I was scared of the Honduran heat since I opened that letter from the travel department (not since I opened call ha ha My life is ridiculous), but it really hasn´t been that bad. It will start raining again in May and it will be smooth sailing until my last transfer when it gets hot again.

On Wednesday and Tuesday it was only 23 degrees Celsious. It hasn´t been that cold since January! I wore a cardigan! It was wonderful, but... it make me super baggy. All I wanted to do was come home from class, make some top rammon and watch a movie in my sweatpants. Oh, well. There´s time for that later. It was really great break from the heat, exactly what I needed to keep working.

So, there is the normal sized Preach My Gospel and the mini one. Clearly, the normal one is way too giant, but the mini is too small. Obviously, we need a medium sized PMG and then they can stop making the huge one. The problem is I don´t know who to talk about it to make this dream a reality, so everyone´s homework for this week is to write an apostle and tell them make it happen. Got it? Good.

On Tuesday I thought to myself, "In my email I´m going to write 'Put your hands up if you´ve been on the mission five months and you still don´t understand the subjunctive!'" But I´m pleased to say that I studied it everyday during language study this week and I´m starting to get it! I still think it´s stupid and useless and you could just as easily use the indicative, but I understand it now, so that rocks.

Chicken fighting isn´t illegal here, so one of my investigators showed us all his fighting chickens. He claims it is the sport of kings. Weird. It was pretty sad to know that these chickens are going to die for absolutely no reason. I kept thinking about that Signfeld episode (I can´t remember how to spell that to save my life.) "They´re gonna kill Little Jerry??"

Edgardo and Ramon didn´t get baptized on the 12. Their new goal is the 26. They are couple of 15 year old punk kids who think Church is boring and they don´t want to come. Silly punk kids, no one is too cool for Church. 

I didn´t know until Thursday that you don´t actually have to have two preisthood holders to give a blessing with oil. I suppose it´s a good thing I don´t hold the preisthood since apparently I don´t know the rules.

Baleadas to date: 128

Serving a mission is weird. Everyday is completely different and yet, they are all exactly the same. It is full of highs and lows. I´m learning so much. I'm learning all sorts of deep doctrine and things like that but more imprtantly I have a better understanding of how the gospel affects me personally in my everyday decisions. I know myself better than I ever have before. It´s weird.

I love you guys and I hope you are all doing well. Have a great week. 

Hermana Odekirk

Monday, April 7, 2014

Divisions, Conference and Painted Baby Chicks

From: Savannah Odekirk ( This sender is in your contact list.
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To: Kris Odekirk (; Sierra Tracey (; Mitchell Sailsbery (; Cassidy Lloyd (; Daniel Carter (; Lindsey Turner (; THOMAS KENDALL BUCHMILLER (

Hermana Hill and Tajiboy came to go on splits with us on Tuesday. It rocked like it always does. My first time with Hermana Hill I felt like a shmo, I got lost and hardly spoke spanish, but this time was great! I know this town like the back of my hand and everyone was home and I know enough spanish that I have no problem taking the lead now. I felt like a pro.
Even when the Lideres Entrenadoras are spending the night at your house, so there are four people who need to shower, you never have to worry about anyone taking all the hot water because they isn´t any hot water anyway.

We taught the Restoration to Louis and I was worried because he usually likes to have lots of evidence from the Bible, but it went really well. He really studied the pamflet before we got there so he basically taught us the lesson! The questions he had were becuase he legitimately had questions, not because he was trying to prove us wrong like most people, so that was nice. We left him a Libro de Mormón and he said he´ll read 3 Nefi 11. I´m really excited about this guy and his family.
We were walking back home to do language study and we saw this guy on the side of the road with a bunch of spray painted baby chicks! They were bright green, pink, and orange! I thought, "Is this for easter or something?" But Hermana Zamora told me that they sell them year around and people buy them fot their kids to play with. Then once they grow and get all ugly they eat it. I really wanted to buy one but the Maual Misional says no pets...
The power went out four times this week.
Friday we got home at four and stayed there the rest of the night, because Zamora got one of her wisdom teeth pulled. So, I did what any bored missionary does after they´ve read their scripture, Jesus the Christ, and a confernce talk, and written in their journal: I watched The District.
I was watching it and I was so grateful I´m here. I really wish I could explain the feeling. I just felt so happy that I still have another year left so that I can become a better missionary. I´m grateful for all the frustration and the heat and the rejection because they build character. They gave the determination that after Edgardo wasn´t home and the familia Cambar wasn´t home and Loudis wasn´t home and it is 95 degrees and I´m hot and I´m dirty, I can take a deep breath, look at Hermana Zamora and say, "Esta bien. Vamos a contactar esa casa."
BTW Holdaway got a DearElder letter that was addressed to the Mexico CCM!! We only left Mexico about four months ago. Esta Bien.

It was a party in the gringo room during conference!! A very reverent party, but a party nontheless. We had nine of us crammed into a closet of a room, it was great! I´ll try to narrow my list of conrence thoughts.
    1. Holland: "Christ like love is the greatest need we have on this planet." I´ve been thinking that for months.
    3. Reeves: "The best filter is a strong tesitmony." You have to stay for from the line, not right up next to it.
    4. Anderson: "You are infinitely more prcious to God than a tree." Thanks, Elder Anderson, I did not know that.
    5. Anderson: "The feeling of the temple is a pattern for how you want to feel in life." Truth. I can´t wait to go to the temple again.
    6. We can´t be neutral about the godpel. You have to be active in brining it into your life.
    7. Uchtdorf: "Commandments are opportunities to exercise out agency and receive blessings." I loved this talk.
    8. Ballard learned to follow up and be persistant on his mission, that´s how he got his wife. You can bet there was latin finger snapping at that point.
    9. Elder Stevens talked all about the Olympics but I didn´t see any of that... awkward. It was stil a realy good talk though. The time is now!
    10. I LOVE BEDNAR!!!!!! All you need is spiritual traction, who knew?
    11. I used to think it was crazy that my entire senior class left on missions! But then Packer told me that his whole senior class left to fight WW2. You win, Packer. "Some lessons cannot be taught, but can be learned."
The gospel is true. Period. Sorry this one was super long. Hope you all had  great conference. I´d love to know what you learned. Have a great week!

Hermana Odekirk

Christmas Cards. Locksmiths and Awesomeness!

Lot´s of excitement happened this week! First of all, I got a Christmas card from the Beehives back home! And a Valentine´s card from Sister Stark. And it´s only March!

Also, yesterday was my five month mark! Sí, hombre-e!!

Natalia was supposed to get baptized on the 29, but on friday she said that she prayed about it and her answer was no, she shouldn´t get baptized... How do you tell an 11 year-old girl that you think her personal revelation wasn´t revelation? I don´t, I´m just going to love her and keep working with her and ask her to pray again...

Edgardo and Ramon are still on track to get baprized on April 12. Pray for them. 

Jesus the Christ is my new favorite book. My mind gets blown every day.

We were teaching this lady in her living room and her mother was sitting in a chair by the wall when all of a sudden the mom hauked up (halked up? hawked up? hocked up?) the biggest spit I´ve ever heard and spit right the wall six inches from her chair!! It was gross. I appreciate a good spit, but inside, at the wall!

Spanish is hard to learn because we all speak english incorrectly. Por ejemplo: if I want to ask what a scripture is about I ask "Sobre qué es esta escritura?" Which directly translates into "About what is this scripture?" not, "What is this scripture about?" You´re never supposed to end a sentence with a preposition or a participle and all that stuff, but we have all been doing it for so long that we don´t even notice it is incorrect anymore!  Oh well.

I accidentally locked our key in the apartment on friday night, so we went and got the locksmith. He came to our house, but instead of bringing a lockpicking kit or something of that regard he brought brought a laminated piece of paper!! He pulled out this piece of paper and proceeded to try and open it the way you would do with your credit card. And that didn´t work so he took out his wallet and pulled out one of his other laminated papers and tried some more. He just sat there giggling the door with this piece of paper in the door crack for about five minutes. Then the door opened, but only an inch, which makes no sense. So I took a closer look and realized he didn´t actually unlock the door he just broke our door frame! Oh, Honduras... He was really nice about it though, he came back and nailed the door frame back together but then the door wouldn´t close! So he asked us if we had a knife and he proceeded to whittle away our door frame with our kitchen knife. When all was said and done our door works better than it ever did before, so that rocks.

Also, I´ve been studying Jacob 5 this week and I am basiclly an expert now. ha ha  It might be one of my new favorite chapters of scripture. Jacob 5:41 

This week really has been great! I´ve just been realizing how many people here I truly love and how much I am learning. We all know that some days are easier than others but I am grateful I´m here. Love you all.

Hermana Odekirk