Monday, April 25, 2016

How in the world is April almost over??? Holy moly... Life is good here in Talara! The climate is changing! It´s slightly cooler -- and by that I mean that now at 5am I have to pull my sheet on (which I haven´t had to do for a good 6 months) But then the sun comes out and it´s hot hot hot by 10am :) This week we discovered a new flavor of chalacas -- guanabana con leche! Guanabana is this giant green fruit that is white and slimy inside -- despite the description it´s really good! 

As far as our investigators, there´s good news and bad news.
Good news; Ellie will be baptized on Saturday, Joel chose Mother´s Day for a baptismal date, and la familia Roman decided on the 21st of May

Bad news; Joel couldn´t make it to church (we´ll have to move his date back) and la familia Roman isn´t married....nooooooooo! 

But it´s all good. We had a miracle improv lesson with la fam. Roman with Hna Liliana. Liliana was baptized last year and chose to separate from her husband in order to get baptized because he didn´t want to get married...and a few months later he had a change of heart and they were married and he was baptized! Now they´re going to be sealed in the temple. Anyways, Hna Liliana SAVED us in that lesson. Hna Celina went from saying she definitely wasn´t going to get married yet because her family lives in la selva (Iquitos mas o menos) and she wants them to be there -- to saying YES WE¨RE DOING IT and planning an activity to raise the money. Seriously that would not have happened without Hna Liliana. I have no idea how to marry a couple here in Peru but Liliana is an expert -- she´s helping them get documents together and we´ll be doing at least 2 activities where Hna Celina is going to cook food from la selva and sell it. I´ll admit it´s gotten me a little stressed this week wondering if it´s all going to work out or not, but I´ve felt peace knowing that The Lord loves this family SO MUCH and he´s going to help them get married so that they can be baptized. 

And Eda and Joel have become our family! They invited us over for lunch today for one of their son´s birthdays and he requested ¨that dish hermana parks likes¨ aka papas a la huancaina because he knows it´s my favorite, haha. Joel has a picture of us and his family as his phone background so you could say we´re pretty close, ha! Eda hasn´t decided on a baptismal date yet because she´s going through a divorce but I think it will be in May, a couple weeks after Joel. 

Wow -- it´s stressful, but so wonderful helping our investigators repent and prepare for baptism. Really, we´re ALL on the covenant path...some are just beginning and others are well on their way. Speaking of covenants, this week marked a year since I went through the temple. I decided to study more about temples in my personal study this week along with Virtue -- my Christlike attribute for April. I received some treasured pieces of revelation that increased my understanding and testimony of temple work.  Elder Packer said; ¨No work is more spiritually refining. No work we do gives us more power. No work requires a higher standard of righteousness. Our labors in the temple cover us with a shield and a protection, both individually and as a people.¨
 I love (and miss) the temple! Temples themselves are symbols of purity, virtue, and godliness --  all the things we are trying to be become. 

So grateful for this week, Talara, my wonderful companion, this gospel, my family, temples, and being a missionary!!

I love you all and I pray for you,
Hermana Parks
The Talara district:
Elder Cruz is from Washington and Elder Williams from Oregon -- so we have like 50% of the mission´s northwesterners in our district! 

Ellie´s family! She will be baptized! Isn´t her little brother the cutest??

 Missionary life in the desert! 

 divisions last week with alexandra and maryorit and last monday pday with alexandra and las hermanas!

 La familia Roman

Dropping off our laundry

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