Monday, October 12, 2015

Buenas tardes a todos!

Great week here in Ignacio and today we headed to Paita to see the OCEAN with like 25% of our mission which was a BLAST. Refer to the 89 pics I am currently uploading :)

 This week I ponderized Alma 37: 6-7 (in Spanish so this probably isn´t exact)
¨By small and simple means are GREAT things brought to pass..and by small means in many instances the Lord doth confound the wise...and bringeth to pass the salvation of MANY souls.¨It completely reflected my personal progression this week and also the progression of our investigators. 

Let´s start with investigators: 
I have NEVER had such a strong testimony of the redundant ¨Sunday School answer¨-- Read your scriptures, pray, go to church. Each of these principles is aboslutely essential for those we teach (and ALL of us). If our investigators read The Book of Mormon, pray with real intent, and attend church, they develop a testimony for themselves that Christ´s church has been restored to the earth with the fulness of the gospel that can bless their lives SO much! La familia Araujo has been doing all 3 of these things perfectly and it has brought Hermana Glunt and I so much joy! They have a baptismal date for the 7th of November! They are reading their Books of Mormon, they loved church, Arturo went to a youth activity, Gina asked for a priesthood blessing for an ear problem she´s been having, Eduardo commented in the gospel principles class, and they are always asking us when we´re going to visit again! I love them so much it is UNREAL. 
Ximena is also progressing and is praying for a baptismal date. She wants to make the decision with a full and sincere heart and she is such a great example to me of spiritual maturity! 
Ana Troncos is progressing greatly. Her boyfriend was baptized a couple months ago and she has asked us so many questions about the temple. I am SO excited to see them sealed in the temple, hopefully before I finish my mission! (She has a baptismal date for the 31st). 
Oh and the most random event ocurred when one of the people we CONTACTED in the street came to church this week, Hermana Italo. He walked up to us after sacrament mtg and was like ¨do you remember me?¨and I was racking my brain trying to remember who in the world he was....turns out he just has a sincere desire to learn and even came to church last week but no one was there because of conference, whoops! Our bad for not specifying. 

My ponderizing scripture had a lot of personal significance to me as well this week. As I was reading it one day and, well, ponderizing, the thought came to me ¨One day you´re going to look back and KNOW why you were here in Ignacio Merino¨. Some days it may not seem like we do a lot, but I know that these small and simple things are bringing to pass great things in my life and the lives of the people here. When I got to my area, I was disappointed as we didn´t have a lot to work with. But as President Uchtdorf once said, ¨That´s the thing about work. If you just keep at it, steady and constant, things WILL get better.¨ Poco a poco. 
Heavenly Father answered our prayers this week big time because we FOUND Hermana Avanell!!! We are now teaching her in the house of a member.  We are so grateful that we ran into her this week and that she still has a desire to live and embrace the gospel! 

Also, my knowledge and understanding of the Atonement was expanded this week. I was reading in Alma 42 and cross referencing to 2 Nephi 9 as well as Elder Holland´s talk from last conference (in my opinion one of the best talks ever given, ever). Often I have focused on the Atonement as a means to comfort and console us in times of trial, when in reality, the Atonement is SO much more. It is much more than a kind gesture and Jesus Christ is much more than an empathizing friend. His sacrifice literally SAVED us from the inevitable abyss of spiritual death, and physical death. Because of Him, MERCY is at our reach if we repent and appeases the demands of justice that bind us because of the Fall. Because of Him, we can live again after this life with our families for the ETERNITY. 
My love for my Savior grew and my desire to serve him was enlarged as I understood/reviewed this doctrine more fully. 

You know you´re serving in Piura when-- your tan lines have gone from noticeable to UNREAL. Refer to the pic of my feet. Also Hermana Glunt and I went through four 20 liter things of water in less than 2 weeks. I´m pretty sure that´s a mission record. 

Love you all and hope you had a fantastic week! Hasta la proxima,
Hermana Parks

 P-day at Paita with the zone

 Crabs on the beach

Zone at Paita

 Dad wanted a photo of the milk
Israeli friend Erez and Eliana, investigator

 Peruvian security system at work - dog on roof
The chapel

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