Monday, May 16, 2016

May 16, 2016

 Woo hoo! Joel has (almost) become a member of Christ`s church! (He`ll be confirmed next week in sacrament meeting since he was baptized after church yesterday) Man, it`s been such a blessing to be a part of his conversion. He said that in his baptismal interview he got really emotional opening up to Elder Cruz about his life before the gospel and the changes he has made... I mentioned that Elder Cruz could baptize him (even though he had just met him) if he wanted and he was like YES! So 90-pound Elder Cruz baptized Joel, and almost went down in the water with him haha. Seriously, it was an awesome baptismal service. The room was full. Now we`ll be focusing on helping Eda (his mom) progress towards baptism, she wants to be baptized in June but she`s SO prepared .. I think it will be sooner. And if any of my fellow Peruvians know of a single girl between 25-35 looking to go to the temple, we`re looking for references for Joel, haha. 

Other notable events this week:
I had an exchange with Hermana Arce from Lima in our area. She`s got 3 weeks in the field but ready to work! It`s always great having exchanges with newbies, they are ready to jump in headfirst -- contact everyone, teach everyone, and be obedient! It`s a great example for us viejitos of the mission (I TURNED 11 MONTHS OLD TODAY WHAT IS LIFE) Also I like intercambios in a way because I don`t have my companion to consult about plans, so I consult more earnestly with the Lord. While planning that night with Hna Arce, I was trying to decide which Futuros we should visit the next day to find new investigators .. and a name stood out to me distinctly. It`s like I was pulled to this name..Blanca Alicia. When Hna Ruiz and I passed by the next day, we didn`t find Blanca but we found her nephew Leo who listened to missionaries in Lima last year and wants to learn more and go to church! Woo hoo! I know that The Lord guides us to where we need to be, when we need to be there. We just have to have ears to hear and a heart to feel the revelation he has in store for us. 

Multi-zone conf was great -- our musical number was awesome, just saying. I found an arrangement of I`ll go where you want me to go and we have some good voices in our zone. President loved it! 

Now that I look back, there were a ton of miracles and answered prayers this week. We`ve been trying to find new investigators through members and accidentally -- mejor dicho, by the Spirit -- knocked on a member`s door not knowing a member lived there and found 2 family members who aren`t members but willing to go to church and want to be baptized, especially Jonathan who`s 19. We`re excited to go back.

AND, we were finally able to contact one of the sisters` investigators that they were teaching a couple months ago (right at the moment when I was about to give up trying to contact her). Her name is Tania, she`s 22 and attending church in Negritos where her boyfriend lives!! She expressed to us how she has felt in church -- a desire to be good, stop drinking, learn more, and go every week for the rest of her life! She is wonderful, seriously. After teaching The Restoration she said she wants to be baptized in June -- the only tough part is meeting with her given her crazy work and study schedule. 

Phew! So many blessings. So many tender mercies. The mission life is the best. I often feel emotionally and spiritually exhausted along with my sore feet at the end of the week on Sunday night, but the next day my spiritual and physical battery gets re-charged automatically because I have been set apart with power and authority to proclaim this message! It`s the best.

Hermana Parks 
 Family history with Francisco (recent convert) and his fam! Also featuring Hermanita Arce from Lima -- this is her first transfer in the field, her area is in Sullana, super nice! 
 decorated my wall .. and pic before leaving the apartment -- sunscreen check, water check, BOM`s, vamos! 

pics with palm trees, por que no?


Hermana Liliana -- the most kind, patient, faithful, and supportive member. I love her!!!! 

Pic of the zone at multi-zone conf and with our new Austrailian friend Hermana Raeside! Her and her husband are the mental health doctors for 32 missions in south america and came to teach us how to control stress. super helpful! 

Noche de hogar with sweet Hna Juana and her family! (with Eda, Joel, and Juana`s less-active kids and nonmember cousin)

Joel`s family and Elder Cruz who baptized him! 

Joel`s baptism!!

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