This is Andrea she got baptised sunday I gave her the holy ghost she was so prepared holy cow! ill write all about it in the letter
Monday, September 30, 2013
Miguel and Johnathon
This week was a week where I was changed forever. It was a very important week for my life. First I would like to share a miracle God let us witness.
His name is Rodrigo and he is a miracle. How can I put it into words well lets start from the beginning. We received a call from a couple of missionaries one Sunday telling us that Rodrigo was a less active that had contacted all the members he had known to try to get hold of the missionaries in his ward in our ward. Eventually we got the reference and even though we had no time we went late to his house and learned a lot of why he needed help. First off he has huge health problems severe health problems. After so much depression and sadness his grandmother told him to ask the missionaries to come by and teach him. so he looked us up.
He then began to describe who he was and what had happened to him to cause him to go inactive. He served a mission but came home early for racism and resentment, anger, and health problems and he began to tell us about all these leaders that had caused him so much pain and how American missionaries had treated him so awful. He moved to Argentina to get away from it all and left the church. He let doubts destroy his once strong testimony. Eventually he married a wonderful woman called Andrea and then his heart problems that he has had for all his life got worse because of the heat of where he was living and he was forced to move back to Uruguay.
He was so bitter and negative when we met him and did not like the US that is for sure. We met him first and his mother who was a strong member but because of What happened to her son she became so offended and racist.
The miracle is all of them have had a change of heart. All of them were present yesterday in the baptism of Andrea and her Husband Rodrigo was in the circle when she recieved the gift of the Holy Ghost.
I am not going to lie I never imagined it was even possible when we first met them he was So unreceptive to the spirit and would always bring everything we were teaching to his problems. But after the 2nd lesson we met Andrea his wife from Argentina who is an angel. She is so christlike and that is what we we started to work on was making them a forever family. It was a hard struggle. He kept destroying lessons and was very offended. But they started coming to church and this last week we saw a miracle in him.
First we gave him a blessing because he was stuck in the hospital for a while and came back very bad. so we gave him a blessing and the crazy thing was he actually a couple of days later went to hospital again but this time he asked his wife to bring him his Book of Mormon and from there he could not stop reading and preaching the gospel with everyone within the reach of his ears. He had heard the bishop sunday tell the ward that we had to give the missionaries references and he went to work. Filled with testimony and excitement, he changed so much. He bore testimony to many and after he got out he went to a reference his grandma gave us and began to testify with such power. He said things like "I am happy finally after so much sadness I am happy again!" He would say things that we had said to him and he tried to help them understand and tell them how he finally understood it all and how negative he was and how it did not help him progess. Me and my companion were amazed by the power of God and what he can do to the hardest of hearts.
Andrea was baptised in freezing water because the water heater was not working. and she is already wanting to go on a mission with her husband and serve and help others. His mother also went to the baptism and now they all love the US he told me the other day he wanted to start learning English again because he use to be amazing but after everything that happened he completely stopped. I am so filled with Joy I cannot explain it. She was the crowning star as the last baptism of our zone for this month with our Goal set at 12 she was number twelve I love them.
Oeste is changed and will only keep growing and being stronger I am so greatful for everything the Lord has given me to be able to be here with the knowledge that HOY ES EL DIA!!! In Oest HOY ES EL DIA!!! This is something we always say in our mission because as Elder Perry has said in the missionary conference world wide the end had begun God is hastening His work!!!
Another miracle this week that was super impactful for me was my interview with President Smith. I will probably never tell anyone exactly what he said to me for I feel it is sacred and special for me but I will tell you that mainly he thanked me for what I was doing and I wept. In the end he said we will be good friends forever. I love him.
Well as you can see in the pictures (I know I should've taken more but It is so hard when you are in charge of everything) we had a zone activity because we hit our baptismal goal of 12 baptisms (never been so high in Our stake). We asked a missionary couple in the offices to help and they just did so much they are wonderful. They cooked a full meal for us and we brought stuff aswell. WE played games and in the end we watched 17 miracles on a big screen projector. I teared up some more. It is such a powerful movie. Really the sacrifice now to go on a mission is nothing. I am grateful to be here so grateful I am so endebted to my savior how could I do anything else. I just find it funny that all of us at one point in our lives we just can´t get a grasp of why we have to go through trials and hard times. Why cant we just be peacefully happy. I will always now in my suffering think of my savior bleeding to death in Getsemani and my ansestors walking the plain digging graves and then laying on top of it to die with them [their loved ones].
I am so grateful for my Savior. I love you all and want you to know that I have felt His love it is real and tangible and changes you forever. Look and seek after it always. HE lives! Ask God you will get an answer.
I love you all so much long email no:) I hope you all know I love you and pray and plead for you as time winds on it scares me but I am excited to be someone different to each and all of you to listen better and share my testimony more and more than anything strengthen those who suffer and have there heads down.
I love you all
ps. I print your emails off every week love your words and thank God for each of you
this is a study we did before a zone capacitation with president these are the beliefs of our mission and scriptures to show examples of them
Monday, September 23, 2013
Ladies and gentlemen can you believe we are having some amazing changes here with me and my companion and this change hasn´t even ended yet. After having an amazing meeting with the stake presidente this last week we talked a lot about focussing and helping one ward in particular be stronger. And well I asked him if he would like more missionaries there in that ward even though it does not have the biggest history of success. And he said yes and so I talked to presidente and we came up with some ideas and in the end it all just fell into place. The assistants called us to tell us that there are two missionaries coming in this tuesday whose missions have been reassigned and they will be our companions for a little more than two weeks to help stregthen this ward and prepare it for two more missionaries. We are very excited basically we will be training two elders fresh from the plane here in their new mission. We are even going to go pick them up from the airport which never happens. It will be quite the experience.
I am going to be staying in our area holding down the fort and my companion will be doing a lot of traveling and finding in this new area and helping these other areas. The Lord is blessing us a lot:)
We will have a baptism next Sunday of Andrea who will be baptised after church which should be awesome. We are excited she is super prepared. Last night we taught the plan of salvation to her and her spouse who is reactivating and also his inactive family memebers and they just drank up every thing we said. It was quite the experience.
We also had an amazing guy we have been working with for a long time called Carlos take the steps and made it the the chapel. His wife is a strong recent convert and now as a family for the first time this last sunday they all attended church. It was powerful to see. Our ward is behind us 100% and because of it and all the miracles that are happening we are starting to really have something special here in our area. Our bishop asks for references for us and we had 50 people or so in our activity of a huge movie night this last friday where we watched the testaments. This week our friday night activity is a ping pong tournament. We also had an Elders quorum BBQ this last saturday and Carlos went and it really helped him feel comfortable. We are as my companion said working from the inside out here by strengthening the wards we will have a far better retention and more than anything those who attend will have others there to help them follow the saviour and to not quit.
Something crazy that happened this last week was a day of divisions I went on with a good elder who is very quiet and pretty new in the mission. Anyway in the middle of the lesson there were huge problems with getting companions for these two sister missionaries so I had to be in the other room calling everyone and their dog trying to solve tons of problems while this elder Minert taught the whole lesson by himself. He did a great Job all I did was come back testify and commit them to go to church and then we left. And he did a great job because that was carlos and he went to church!
Other than that i am sorry I haven't written any hand letters in a long time. I just have so little time I hope you´ll forgive me and just now that I love you and will let you all read my journal that is very long and you can live every experience with me.
Teddy and Bo thank you for always remembering me and always writing you both are the best and Grandma Jaqui I love you all so much.
Life is good the big lesson that God wanted me to learn this week is that the world is filled with mediocracy and that we must fight with everything we have to beat that to do more to be more to give more to help more. We need to fight to be extraordinary. I want to make my father in heaven proud I cannot sell myself short there is more to be had more people to help more christ like attributes I can develop and so much more I can give. We just need to give a little more every day. I love you all so much Thank you for your prayers you are in mine always:)
the pictures are me in the rain and me next to a building of the church of the jesus christ científico (scientific) we had a good laugh.
Monday, September 16, 2013
I am not gonna lie I miss you guys it might have something to do with the fact that every night for some reason I keep dreaming that I am arriving home or something crazy like that. But anyway I am doing wonderfully thank you for your prayers and love I have changed so much here and yet have much more to go and luckily I still have lots of time to help bless lives.
This week was crazy when it came to the weather here this week. Right now it is raining ice rain. It is a freezing storm just like over there. I found some rain boots in the house and am wearing those to keep dry. But at the start of this week it was so so hot and humid we were in short sleeve shirts dying of heat. Then we woke up and since then it has been cold and wet. But not as bad as over there.
This week we had a zone capacitation in our zone where we taught our zone all the things that president had taught us in Our leaders Council the week before. It went really well and there was a lot of excitement and joy in the new changes in the mission. We have helped bring about many of these changes here in the mission and truly our zone has tranformed from one of the zones that rarely has a baptism to a zone that has success!! It was all the Lord and His grand design. And it has to do with us working hard with the priesthood keys that the bishop holds when it comes to the missionary work in our ward. We have seen miracles in wards that never saw baptisms but now have had 4 in the last couple of months. The truth is when it really comes down to it in every aspect of life the success of someone comes down to one thing, themselves and more specifically, their mentality. If a missionary says there is nothing in my area, he will find nothing. If a missionary changes his mentality and says there is someone here who needs our message, they will find that person. I am so grateful to be here learning so much that is changing my life forever.
Here with the rain we had a couple of problems with people attending church but we have huge expectations for the week to come. We are teaching some amazingly prepared people. Our stake president is helping a lot as well and helping us really put an emphsis on general conference and inviting less actives and family members and friends to see general conference not in our houses but in the chapel. We are excited. Our ward monthly goal for this month is 10 inactives and 10 investigators in General Conference. Our bishop is very behind this and already committed in front of the ward council that he had two people he would be taking to general conference. I love this ward I do not want to leave here.
It amazes me how Fletcher has a drivers licience and how Tanner is reading the lighning thief. I am excited to live some of these memories with you all some day soon. But the good news is I have become a lot more like who Heavenly Father wants me to be and I need to strive forward still to reach my potential. I love you all! Know that you are all in my prayers. and, know that I know that this church is true, that God lives and love us, that God always listens to our prayers but only answers when we are ready for the answer. I know that Christ died for me and also lived for me. I love you all so much share your testimony with everyone so that they too can be uplifted. It is truly the best thing you could ever give anyone, your testimony. And invite them to be able to return to theirHeavenly Father and utilize the atonement in their lives. I love you sooooooooo much!!
ps. We cleaned a scary old building that was a mental hospital/old folks home and it was owned by the catholic church which was awesoem to do some service there. But there were parts that were pretty creepy like a video game almost. we went as a stake service project.
Monday, September 9, 2013
Well who would´ve guessed that I would hit 21 so fast but I did and what next well 22 I guess.
Well Ok I will call presidente today and ask him to have the edorsemnet done . yah I have heard that with an edorsement it is a lot better to aply to The Mtc I need to look into it all. I fly home I´m pretty possitive on the 3rd of january so that will be good I wont screw up tates B-day like the last time. I already wrote to Jordan and all them and told them to be in the airport also McCraney and all of my friends:)
It is crazy to get all these updates from home thank you all and bless your hearts to all those who write me even though I am terrible and never have time to respond. literally today I still have not eaten luch and will have to grab something on the go and then begin to plan for our zone capacitation we are having tomorrow.
We had all the Zone leaders and hermana trainers(which are like the sister leaders here inthe mish) together here in Montevideo this last thursday for our zone concilio which was filled with revelation sent from God to Uruguay. Something that our president said was we will never understand the gravity of all that we are doing not only for the salvation but for this country we are changing it forver. It is so true and we focussed on growing what is truely important here and focussing our efforts on helping the leadership of the church here and growing the wards and finding the lost the spirit was so strong as we realized that this is why we are all here to grow the kingdom of God here in Uruguay. Lots of changes in our missiona all for the better we all stand back in awe as we see the lords hand in the work here. The main focuss all begins with the working with bishops and stake presidents to have success and all over Uruguay we are seeing miracles.
We had a difficult week in our area as almost literally every lesson fell though or something happened that demanded our attention in another area or in the ward to help support. But we still had a wonderful woman whos husband is a member come to church this week and after a very spiritual charla we invited her to be baptised and she accepted asking if she could get baptised on her birthday(26th of sept). She is very excited and so is the ward because she is the wife a a memeber who was very active went on the mission and then came home early and did not recieve the welcoming he needed in a very bad emotional esstate and so he left the true church. The ward is very much behind us in our area and are beginning to take their own initiative in doing missionary work through the monthy goal which was a very effective piece of revelation from president. We are putting a huge push here in Oeste on General conference in October we are going to talk to the stake president and have him help us make the goal of every ward here in Montevideo to strengthen itself by having a huge turn out in General conference. and expecially inviting less actives and non members we are going to see hundreds of miracles. We are excited lots to do.
Thanks mom and Everyone I recieved lots of cards I love you all so much! I had an asado(barbeque) and cake on my birthday here the other day from the bishop so it was a good day:)
I just want you all to know that I love you all like crazy thank you for everything for all you do and say and expecially all your prayers. I am learing so much and have much more to Go but I am fighting for the lord and we already know who will win in the end. I know what I am doing makes a difference I know that this church is true the spirit has touched my heart many times to give me that answer. I am so filled with gratitude to be here serving at this time. I love my Saviour and with my small sacrifice I can give a little back.
Monday, September 2, 2013
How I love you all and miss you all wherever you find yourself in the world I am grateful for your prayers and love. Even though I am terrible at responding to letters lately I ask for your forgiveness and I hope to get some done today.
I received two packages from you Mom:) thank you so much I already use that leather bound binder when I teach my zone:) Oh and Mom I dont play with the cards you send I just collect them its like opening up a christmas present here in the mission because you never know what is inside. I am glad you got the essays I will talk to presidente this week about the edorsement.
Well I had an incredible week! We had a baptism!! SO awesome he was so prepared. To think I found him through knocking doors late one night:) first we started teaching his step dad who is super evangelical but then we met Jonathan and he told us later that he had prayed to God to have more faith and that day I knocked his door. He has made some changes with his life but quickly accepted the gospel and the commandments. After he had recieved a spiritual answer about all we taught there was nothing he would not accept because he knew it came from God. I had the privilege to baptise him. How blessed I have been by the lord. I have been given so very much.
We also had a miracle lesson this week with a an investigator we have had for a long time but was not a firm investigator until this last week (Carlos) when we challenged him to read the book of mormon. and when we went by to have a lesson with him we forgot to verify if he had read and we taught the plan of salvation focussing on him being sealed to his wife in the holy temple(his wife is a recent convert) and he asked lots great questions but nothing was too firm like when can I get baptised or anything like that but in the end We asked him to offer the closing prayer and tears leaked down my face as I listened to him tell God that for the first time with all the missionaries who asked him to, he had read and after he felt something he had never felt before and that he knew this was God's way of talking to him. He said he felt the same way as he prayed. After the prayer I explained to him that was the spirit and Invited him to follow his Saviour and be baptised. He accepted!! after months of his wife praying and praying for her husband to follow her example he read and felt the spirit. I love being a missionary.
This week we also had changes in the mission and I was able to see Elder Diotaiuti my son which was awesome and also lots of good friends from the mission I have not seen for a while.
We are looking at lots of success here in our zone this month:) We are working a ton with the bishop and members here and it is really paying off I love the mission it is a blast to see things you do bare fruit and see miracles happen and a ward that never use to have baptisms flourish!
Mom Happy Birthday Tomorrow:) I love you more than you will ever know I miss you and cannot wait to hug and kiss you.. I'm working to make you proud very very proud. I will not be coming back the same as when I left.
I love you all Like crazy.
The greatest joy I have felt here in the mission is when you teach someone or something and you see as small and insignificant as the world makes you feel that you can make a difference in someones life. I love healing, teaching, consoling, crying repentance and loving. I love knowing that I helped change someone's life and at the same time changed mine completely.
I love you all