Mom and dad! I just wanted to let you know that I am here safe and sound! I already love it! I do not know who my companion is yet but am about to find out. I just went contacting and placed a book of mormon and a lot of flyers! It is so crazy and a lot colder here! also my package just arrived! cant wait to tell you more next week!love
Hola familia y amigos!
Well here I am 2 hours from the time I will leave the CCM forever! There are definitely a lot of mixed feelings I am experiencing right now. Last night I could not sleep at all because too many things were going through my mind. A HUGE change is about to occur. It´s difficult not knowing just exactly what to expect, but I know that the strength of the Lord will be with me, and I am SO grateful for the past 6 weeks and the amount of preparation I have had from great teachers. It is going to be a big adjustment, but I am ready! This past week has been a lot of packing, meetings, and trying to retain as much information as possible. I still have so much to learn, but isn´t that what this whole experience is about? Continually finding ways to big others to Christ. During our meetings, we were taught that there are several different ways to find people, and we are expected to use every resource we can. I learned that members are a crucial part of missionary work and without them it is nearly impossible. A member should be present at every lesson possible, and should take part in friend shipping the investigator so they feel comfortable and have a friend once the missionaries have gone. At the devotional on Tuesday, I learned that as a missionary it is my responsibility to get to know every member individually, learn to identify their needs, and visit them often. The relationship I have with members with open doors to receiving referrals and help with identifying needs of investigators.
I have become very close to my companion during my time here, and I am sad that I have to leave her. Just when we had finally begun teaching in perfect unity and were beginning to understand how to be missionaries, we have to be separated. Its going to be difficult completely starting over. I do not know who my next companion will be, but I do understand the importance of showing her love, being patient, communication, and watching her example closely. I know God has a plan for me and I am so grateful for the relationship I have built with him while I have been here. He knows me personally, my thoughts, intentions, and every desire. I can turn to him always and he will listen. I know my Savior lives and understands every heartache, pain, and sorrow I ever have or will experienced. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. He was called to restore the Gospel and did translate The Book of Mormon by the power of God. I know that every single question I have can be answered within the pages of The Book of Mormon. I know this gospel is the only way for people to return to live with God, Jesus Christ, and their families forever, and I am so excited to share this message with them.
Thank you for all of your support and love. I will have much to tell you about next week!
Con mucho amor,
p.s. This picture is my district with the Branch presidency. President Rodriguez brought his son this Sunday. His name is Liam and he is adorable
Here we are trying to copy the Beatles picture
I received my flight itinerary, and I will be flying out of Mexico City at 8:30 p.m. Monday night so we will be leaving the MTC at 4 p.m. From Mexico I fly to Santiago Chile. It is about an 8 1/2 hour flight, then we have a one hour layover in Santiago and another 1 1/2 flight to Concepcion. I get to email all of you tonight and will also be on email again on Monday so I will be reading messages then and from now on my p-day will be on Monday...I think. Just wanted to send you a short message and let you know the plans. Things are going well and I am anxious to get into the mission field! I look forward to telling you about my upcoming adventures!Con amor,
Familia y amigos,
Well it is officially my last week here in Mexico City. It is crazy for me to think about where I will be heading next week at this time. Although I definitely do not know the doctrine or language perfectly, I have grown in unimaginable ways these past 6 weeks, and I must say I am qutie excited to get into the mission field. On Saturday, one of our teachers had his last day and expressed his testimony to us about the need to be mautre missionaries. He explained that our next companions are probably praying right now for God to send a good missionary to help them, someone willing to work, find people, and touch lives. He told us we need to be that missionary. I really appreciate his testimony because his comments have motivated me to have the desire to work with all my might, to use my time wisely and effectively, and to be obeidient in every way possible. Saturday our district leader invited all the people in our district to join in a special fast specifically for extra endurance and strength to focus and work hard this last week in the CCM. As all the members of my district joined in this special fast, I felt the comfort, strength, and love of God especially throughout our meetings on Sunday.
In Relief Society, Hermana Pratt explained that I hold in my hands the happiness of more people than I can imagine! Every day I make decisions and each one of these decisions determine whether I will leave a heritage of hope for my future children and posterity to follow. I learned that I must do all that is required of me to be sure I am not the weak link in athe chain of my generations. WE studied the talk Keep the Chain unbroken, by President Gordan B. Hinkley at a BYU devotional. He shares:
As I sat in the Celestial room, I thought of my great-grandfather, the first in my family to join the Church. Then there was my grandfather, who was baptized in Nauvoo and who subsequently crossed the plains in the migration of our people. Then came my father who became president of the largest stake in the Church with more than 15,000 members.These three good men represent the three generations of my forebears who have been faithful in the Church. Reflecting on the lives of these three men while I was seated in the temple, I looked down at my daughter, at her daughter, who is my grandchild, and at her children, my great-grandchildren. I suddenly realized that I stood right in the middle of these seven generations—three before me and three after me.
In that sacred and hallowed house there passed through my mind a sense of the tremendous obligation that was mine to pass on all that I had received as an inheritance from my forebears to the generations who have now come after me.As I sat in the celestial room of the temple pondering these things, I said to myself, “Never permit yourself to become a weak link in the chain of your generations.” It is so important that we pass on without a blemish our inheritance of body and brain and, if you please, faith and virtue untarnished to the generations who will come after us.God bless you, my dear friends. Be faithful. Be true. Be loyal to the great cause of which you are a part. Never become a weak link in the chain of your family’s generations. Do whatever you are asked to do, and do it with a glad heart.
Before I coming on my mission, i had the opportunity to attend the temple with my grandparents, parents, siblings, and otehr relatives. As I looked around the room my feelings were similar to those of President Hinkley. I felt as though I caught a glimpse of what it will be like in the Celestial Kingdom, and felt a deep appreciation for all the people who have led, and guided me throughout my life so I can continue the chaine of a faithful posterity. During personal study I came across D&C 137:1-4. This is such a beautiful description Joseph Smith shares about the Celestial Kingdom. I want to be with my family forever. I want to be one who enters those beautiful gates and with my family enjoys the blessings of exhalation, and I know that if I want this it is up to me to choose now the course I will take. I must live a higher law, find more ways to be obedient, bring more people to Christ, and continually serve others.
If you are interested in reading The Rising Generation by David A. Bednar, it is a great talk! https://www.lds.org/ensign/2010/06/things-as-they-really-are?lang=eng start at the part titled The Rising Generation
He says people of this generation have been blessed with greater capacity to be obedient than any other generation. I have a strong testimony that Christ lives and God is my loving Heavenly Father. As I obey I know I will be blessed tremendously.
Thank you all for your love, support, and endless kindness. I feel your prayers and am grateful for the strength they bring to me. The next time I email I will be in Chilie! I hope you all have a wondfeful week .
con mucho amor,
P.S. This week someone called me by my first name in the comedor, and guess who it was? Jace Taylor! Also, currently all the girls in my spanish calss at BYU who are going to Chile are here... kind of crazy!
Hola mi familia y amigos!
Well the past few days have been interesting and very difficult for me. Early Friday morning I woke up feeling like I had the stomach flu, but later on felt completely fine. Then on Saturday night, my whole body was so achy, so we went home early and by the time I was ready for bed felt like I had the worst fever! The hospital was closed so I tried to sleep, but had the most miserable night. Sunday I felt even worse, but somehow managed to drag myself to sacrament meeting so I could ask my Branch President for a blessing. It was such a special experience. I am so grateful for the power of the priesthood, and know it can work miracles.
After sacrament meeting my companion brought me to the hospital and the doctor gave me a lot of medication. He took my temperature and said I had a fever and infection in my stomach so I needed to go home and sleep...so I did...all day, night, and part of the next day. I have never felt so sick! This sickness is spreading like the plague around the CCM! There are 4 girls in my casa sick right now. I was sad I missed Sunday because it's so spiritually uplifting, but I'm feeling much better today, and had such a beautiful experience this morning.
Today was our district's turn to go outside the wall. IT was fun riding on the bus to the temple and seeing the real world. I feel like I've been so sheltered inside the walls of the CCM. THe Visitor Center is beautiful, and so peaceful! WE began in the room with the the statue of Christ and listened to the Sister missionaries, and the audio of Christ's voice. I lvoe when he says, Ï give unto you another commandment to love me, and to love thy neighbor as thyself. WE show our Savior how much we love him and are grateful for his sacrifice when we follow his example by loving everyone. AS I looked out the window at the people walking on the street, I couldn't help but think about what their story is, and how significant each one of them is to God. My purpose is A invitar a las personas a venir a Cristo (to invite people to come to Christ) I am looking forward to fulfilling my purpose. I want every person to feel the same joy the gospel brings to me.
The sisters then brought us on a small tour of the visitor center. It is amazing! One room is designed to look like the time Christ lived and reminded me of an LDS Disneyland! haha There were beautiful pictures of Christ performing miracles and serving others.
Another room was for children and would probably be the ideal playroom for any kid. There were ipads for the kids to color book of Mormon photos or play little games. There was a giant tree with a secret play house that looked like something straight from the Nephite/Lamanite times...
One of my favorite parts was a room where we watched a movie about families. The sisters told us to think about our own families and the families we will be teaching on our missions. It demonstrated Gods entire plan of happiness. I got so emotional because my family means everything to me and I am so grateful that God loves me enough to provide a perfect plan that allows us to be together for time and all eternity. The sisters explained the teaching the lesson about eternal families is their favorite part. I can definitely see why.
I want you all to know how grateful I am for your love and support. I am truly blessed to have such a wonderful family and many people who love and care for me. I can hardly believe that I'm on week 5! Next monday we will be taking our pictures as a district for our farewell slideshow. I am definitely not fluent in the language and do not know everything it takes to be a missionary, but I have been trained well and I know these last two weeks will be valuable. I have faith that as I continue to study, and remain close to the lord, and fulfill my purpose and responsibility as a missionary, I will soon learn what I need to and continually learn ways to better teach the people.
I hope you all have a wonderful week! you are in my thoughts and prayers!
Con Mucho Amor,
¡Hola mi familia y amigos! It has been another great week here at the CCM. 150 new missionaries arrived on Wednesday and some of our close friends left for the mission field. It´s strange to think that we are the ones helping the new Hermanas feel comfortable and give advice to. Before I know it, I´ll be on my flight to Chile!
There were a couple of days this week when I felt a little discouraged because it didn´t seem like I had progressed as much as I should have. One night after a rough day, my companion read me a poem someone copied ofr her before she left.
"The mission is a strange experience
It's a trial and a test.
The mission throws at you the worst, yet teaches you the best.
The told me this would be the best period of my life
But I guess they didn't explain it all too clear.
I came out looking for a bed of roses
I just wasn't expecting all the thorns out here.
Since I've been out I've never been so happy I've never felt so depressed.
I've never felt so forsaken. I've never felt so blessed
I've never been so confused. My mind has never been so clear.
Ive never felt my Heavenly Father so distant. Ive never felt him so near.
Ive never been so discouraged. Ive never been so full of hope.
I feel like I can go forever. I think Ive come to the end of my cope.
Ive never had it so easy. Ive never had it so tough.
Things have never gone so smoothly, things have never been so rough.
Ive never traveled through more valleys. Ive never ascended so many peaks.
Ive never met so many neat people. Ive never met so many freaks.
Ive never had so many ups. Ive never had so many downs.
Ive never worn so many smiles. Ive never worn so many frowns.
Ive never been so lonely, Ive never had so many friends.
Man, I hope this is all over soon. Gosh I hope it never ends!"
Although I have only been gone for a few weeks, I can't explain how much this little poem helped me in a time of need. Will this experience be difficult? Of course! But I am confident that when I look back in my life, I will be forever grateful for my decision to serve a mission.
Lately we have been role playing and teaching a lot. We have to think on our feet without anything planned or notes. It's a little stressful doing this, but I love it because I can realize how much I truly do know and have learned about the Gospel and language. I am learning to teach by the spirit.
During our lesson this week, we read 2 Nephi: 31 , the doctrine of Christ. The spirit was so strong, and towards the end, I felt prompted to ask our investigator if he would prepare to be baptized on a certain date. He said he would!
While in Ukraine, the Mission President there gave me some of the most valuable advice. Lately I've been thinking about it. He told me to set a standard for myself and never lower that regardless of my companion, district, or mission president. Like I said before, my companion and I are the only girls in our district and it is often hard to focus with most of the Elders messing around, but through a lot of prayer for love and patience, we have been blessed with strength.
Sundays are always SO wonderful! In relief society, we learned about the way we have patterns in our lives and the importance of recognizing those patterns. We read through several chapters in the beginning of first Nephi. Specifically about when Nephi was commanded to build a ship. When he and his family arrived in the promised land, Nephi asked God where he could find ore to make tools to build the ship. The ore was provided by the Lord, but Nephi had to work to create the tools that would help build the ship. This task was something NEphi had never done before, but he knew that whenever the Lord commands, he shall prepare a way.
We have all been given ore in our lives. Things to help us accomplish the tasks we have been asked to do. This pattern has application always throughout our lives. For me right now, the boat I am building is my mission. Later on it will be building my Eternal family.
Another pattern she explained was that when Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden, everything was perfect, then when they partook of the fruit they were cast in to the lone and dreary world. Before coming on my mission, my home was my Garden of Eden. I was comfortable and familiar with where I was. Once I arrived in the MTC, it was like I was cast out into the lone and dreary world. By the end of my 6 weeks however, after I have progressed, learned, made friends, and become more comfortable, this will be my Garden of Eden, and so the pattern continues each time there is a change in my life.
Today at the devotional I get to lead the music and also sing in the choir. WE are singing Juventud de Israel and it sounds beautiful! Tuesday's are great because it's pizza night, pday and devotional. Sometime soon our district will get to go to the temple and walk through the visiro center. Some girls in our casa went this last week and said it is amazing! Unfortunately the temple is closed right now so we can't do a session, but it will be fun to go our for a little while.
Well that's all for this week! Sorry for the long email! I have soooo many things I want to share... never enough time! I hope you are all doing well. You're in my thoughts and prayers.
p.s. I forgot to mention that Elder Fails, from Beaver, is in my district. He is Brady Eyres nephew. Small world!
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”