June 27, 2014

June 23, 2014

Guess who hits her halfway mark this Wednesday? ME. I feel so weird! Things are going by way too fast. 

So this week has been rough...but really good too. 

Hermana Kim and I are working hard to contact EVERY family that we see without fail. We're getting better and we're starting to see the results. A lot of families are conviviendo (Not married).. so they won't progress, but we know we're bound to find a married couple and their kids soon enough! 

Thursday and Friday were kind of rough days. On Thursday we just dealt with a lot of people that are facing problems because of infidelity and because they've broken the law of chastity. I'm starting to realize that most things go back to that. I'm not going to tell you all about the problems... but we just had to preach a lot of repentance this week. As a missionary, there are just points when you get a taste of what the Savior went through... when you feel the sorrow, shame, and guilt associated with the consequences of sins that other people have committed. Sometimes it weighs down so much on you that it's unbearable. That's when you have to remember that the Atonement is for everyone, including you. I've grown so close to my Savior through these experiences, and even though a lot of people are too hardened and don't want to change, I've found peace and I've been courageous enough to tell people WHY they're suffering and how they can fix it. 

Friday night was awesome. Our ward mission leader is seriously LO MAXIMO. We had a mission activity "La Barra de Hierro"... aka The Iron Rod. Do you remember in girls camp when they blindfolded us and we had to follow a rope all through the campsites? We did the same thing but in our church building and it was a complete success. Tons of people came, including our investigators, and it was really impactful. 

So C. Have I told you lately how much I love C.? In the last month that we've known her, she's become one of my very best friends, and one of the greatest examples of faith I have ever seen. We have so much fun together, and we feel the spirit so strongly every time we teach her. This week she told us that she broke up with her boyfriend that lives in Huancayo...because he told her he probably won't even look into the church. She told us that her sights are set on someone that will be able to live the gospel with her and go to the temple. In the month that she's been investigating, she's been so faithful to the commandments and the things that she's learning. There's a real change that has been wrought in her, and she can see it. She's super smart, and asks amazing questions, some that I don't have the answers too...but even when she asks, and we don't know, she's okay with it. She's a wonderful example to people everywhere. She's really experiencing the miraculous change that the gospel brings. 

E. is also getting baptized this week! She's been progressing so much since we had our lesson with her the week before. She's determined to get baptized this weekend, and L. is also fully active again. We're so happy. We're still working with R., L's husband. He's a really great guy, but I think that he's just afraid to change...and afraid of what his coworkers will think. We're trying to figure out how to help him accept the Gospel for his family. We're trying to baptize him together with S, so we'll be waiting for a few weeks to baptize S. 

I've been thinking a ton about Brett this week. I still can't believe that he's on the other side of the world. Our experiences are already so different, of that I'm sure...but it's amazing how the Gospel connects EVERYONE. He's speaking a different language, learning a different culture, but he's teaching the same things, his testimony grows from the same principles, and we're both going to be rooted in the Gospel so much more because of these 3 years of service. 

I love you guys! I hope you always remember that. I feel all of the support and love you give and I'm so grateful for it. I hope that I'm doing things right and that you can see how much this mission is changing me, hopefully for the better. I've made so many mistakes along the way, but each day I'm learning and I'm starting to make sense of the little things. The gospel changes lives. The Book of Mormon changes lives. Jesus Christ changes lives. This work is real, it's the work of the Lord and this is His church. 

Les amo muchisimo. Ojala que nunca lo olviden. Cuidense <3
Hermana Carr 

June 16, 2014

June 16, 2014

Dear Family-

Wow. I seriously can't believe how fast time is flying. Brett, how the heck are you already leaving for your mission?! Didn't you just barely get your call?! 

Momma, thanks for raising such good kids. I hope you can see the impact that Brett's made for so many people, and FOR GOOD. And you're allowed to take a lot of credit for that...being his mom and all. I'm so glad that the Wikas came to church, I'm sure that they felt the Spirit there. Looks like it was fun to have Julian's family come up, and it was cool of the Tracy family to come too. Brett's going to make it just fine, just remember he's probably going to be with tons of other 18 year olds that haven't left home before...they'll figure it out haha. Thanks Momma, Hermana Kim is seriously the best. We work so well together.

TJ, glad your leg is feeling a little better! I hope it keeps on getting better! Which room are you getting? Is Jake moving into Brett's room or are you? 

Daddy, Love the temple pic. You guys all look great! I'm so glad the spirit was strong in Brett's farewell and that Jake and Spencer are good friends now. Thanks for the scriptures, I'm printing out the references and I'm going to use them in my studies this week. Hahaha every time we sing Called to Serve I laugh because I think of you singing that part. I love you Daddy, I hope your fathers day was great. 

Jake, I don't think there was a single word of Spanish in there, but thanks for trying bahahaa. Sounds like you had a fun time at Silverwood. What was your speech about? Sounds like you and Spencer are becoming awesome friends, I love it! 

Kacey, glad you get to have a fun, careless summer now! Have so much fun at work and read some good books for me! You're going to be the oldest in the house now, so help mom and dad a ton okay?! 

Brett, I seriously can't believe you're headed out!!! I'm glad you feel ready, that definitely means it's time to head out. What did you give your farewell talk on? I think it's funny how the Lord surprises us with the way life pans out, I never in a million years thought I'd be a missionary, and I really didn't think I would be one before you... I'm glad that we're going to be able to have this experience together though. Seriously the Lord knows us so well, and I think He knew that we'd learn so much more if we served at the same time. You're going to be an awesome missionary Elder Carr, I can already see you changing the lives of ALL of Europe. I love you tons. 

This was an interesting week. Well let's be honest I was humbled in a lot of ways and it hurt...but I'm doing better haha. After the Hermana Carr smash down...we had a good week. 

Our investigator C. is the bomb.com. Seriously, she's the coolest. When she says YES to something, she sticks with her decision. We taught her the Word of Wisdom the day before she had to go to a work party where everyone was drinking. She denied all of her favorite drinks and even with the peer pressure she was able to keep from drinking because she knew it was wrong. Luckily she had some LDS friends there with her and they sat in a corner and had a great time drinking their Inca colas. She comes to every activity, every baptism, and hasn't missed a Sunday...despite the business of her life she's making the Gospel a priority and it's beautiful to see how it's changing her life. 

We went to visit E. to see what her desire is about the Gospel, because she just hasn't been keeping her commitments...I was afraid that we were going to have to drop her. We showed up on Wednesday night and I realized that the fault was really ours. We hadn't taught her well enough. She was confused about the requirements for getting baptized and she didn't take her decision very seriously. So we helped her to understand the importance of what we ask her to do and of the decision of being baptized and how to recognize her answer. We read in Moroni 10 and she told us that all of the sudden she just got really warm. I explained to her that it was the spirit. It was a really spiritual lesson and she, L. and S. committed to coming to church.

 Sunday I was playing the piano in Sacrament, which is right next to a window. During the Sacrament I was looking out the window just thinking about if the Lord was proud of me and what we are doing, and trying to figure out what I need to change. Then suddenly out of the corner of my eye, I SAW R!!! L's husband! Followed by L., their three kids, and E with her "friend". It was so fantastic! They stayed all three hours, R. participated in everything. I can't wait until we find him again to talk to him about being baptized. 

Well it was a good week. More than anything Brett, I just want to tell you that what you're getting into is going to be the hardest, sweetest, most important time of your life so far. You're going to learn things you never knew, have experiences you couldn't have had anywhere else, and you'll grow closer to the Savior than you ever imagined was possible. Before you go, make sure Dad gives you a Father's Blessing. When you get there, make some goals for your mission in every aspect of the work. Remember that your responsibility is to BAPTIZE, RETAIN, and REACTIVATE...and that when you BAPTIZE, you keep people active and bring people back to church. Learn to LOVE the people and the good parts of their culture and BE OBEDIENT. Seriously, just do it. You're going to have the temptation to do stupid things that don't seem like a big deal, but when you decide to be exactly obedient, that's when the real miracles start. I love you brudder. Seriously you've been such an awesome example to me in my life and I know that you are going to change the lives of so many people. I'm sure your German will get so good that people will think you're from there (you already look like you're a German, so just work on that accent haha) 

I LOVE YOU BRETT! BE SO SAFE. WORK HARD. HAVE FUN. STRIVE FOR THE SPIRIT. This is the work of the Lord. It isn't the work of anybody else. The moment you get set apart...you covenant to be the Lord's servant and representative. You're going to wear the name of our family on your name badge and the name of our Savior. Always remember that. Even when you don't think people are looking, the first thing they notice are the words "Elder CARR and Jesus Christ". Keep that in mind. I know you'll make the family, and more importantly, the Lord, very proud. 

Mom and Dad, more Mom than anything, don't be saddddddd! I know the family jokester is leaving the house for the first time, but just remember that he's doing the greatest thing he can possibly do with his life at this time. So many more blessings are going to come to our family for this.

I love each of you so much. I hope that you have a wonderful week. Brett have a safe flight. I love you. 

Con todo mi amor,
Hermana Carr 

service project- painting a house with water based paint

Miraflores with Hermana Kim

"Good Luck Elder Carr"

June 13, 2014

June 9, 2014

WOOOOOWWWWWWW. The family's had a CRAZY week! 
TJ, I'm glad you're okay buddy! Sorry about your foot, it looks like it hurt really bad. Can you walk on it? 
Kacey! Way to go! Um....yeaahhh you were fabulous, I watched the video clip dad sent me and I'm bawling haha. You look gorgeous and you sound great! Beautiful job baby girl!
Brett, OH MY GOSH. DOWN TO THE WIRE. I'm freaking out for you haha. I can't believe how fast the time has gone by since you got your call, and now you're LEAVING. Congrats on your graduation, the pics are awesome and I'm glad you won something at the all nighter haha. Enjoy your last week at home, spend a ton of time with the family...you'll realize really quick that it's them you miss more than anything else... and EAT GOOD FOOD. All week. I don't know what Germany is like...but man I miss mom's cooking haha
Jakers, good luck at your piano recital and congrats on your 100%, that's awesome. Why are you guys going to Utah? 
Mom, sounds like you've had a crazy week. Where did the countertop come from that fell on Tj's leg? When do you finish clinicals and school for the summer? Glad Tj's all taken care of. Awww Sam!!! I can't believe he's home, I'm so old. He'll get it figured out real soon, is he going to school for Summer term or is he just going to hang out at home? Tell him I say hi and to write me, I want to hear about how his mission went! 
Dad, once again...glad you've got connections and Tj is okay! I LOVE your picture on the trek property, it's awesome! SISTER TENNY IS HOME?! OH MY GOSH....that means Kristy is getting home next month...that's nuts. Yeah, my friend Kristy Rich was in the same mission, Spanish speaking. Time is flying by. I'm sad Grandpa and Grandma can't go, but it's still going to be a beautiful experience. Take lots of pictures :) 

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY DADDY! I love you tons! Thanks for always being such an amazing example for me. You're my rock. I've been so blessed to have a dad that has been in my life and so faithful to the Gospel. Thanks for being such a good father and husband and for always being there for me. You always say exactly what I need to hear and I'm so grateful for you in my life. 

So...to explain the coke pictures... haha. My zone leaders last transfer were my best friends haha. There was a coca cola promotion here for MUNDIAL (the world cup). If you collected enough "goles"...or coke caps, you could trade them in for a bunch of cheap, worthless stuff. So we had a competition and ended up getting our backpacks on the same day! It was fun while it lasted...and perfect timing because Elder Acero got transfered :( He was an awesome leader. 

This was a beautiful week for us. Like I told you guys last week, we found a miracle girl named C .at church last Sunday. Her friend had brought her to church and introduced her to us (her friend isn't even in our ward). Well last week we started teaching her. She didn't accept a baptismal date right off the bat. On Thursday we went to visit her again and we felt that we needed to explain to her how she will receive her answer about if this is the truth or not. It was a really spiritual lesson and then C. shared something that made me repent al toque. She told us that her friends at work had told her that if she wanted to learn more, she just needed to look for the missionaries in her area. If she walked by, they would greet her and she could ask them to come visit her (her friends at work live far away, so they only teach her when they're working). Well she told us that one day she saw us talking to the elders, I think it was after internet or something, and she walked by TWICE trying to get the courage to say something to us...but we didn't even see her and she was too scared to come up to a huge crowd of people. I felt like such a failure when she told me that. I should have been listening to the spirit and I should have noticed her, I apologized to her right off the bat and told her that it was our fault that we didn't get to teach her sooner, luckily she has an awesome friend, Roberto, who told her he would come to church with her and introduce her to the missionaries in her ward. She came to the baptism on Saturday and Sunday she told us she received her answer at the baptism. She's getting baptized for sure on the 28th. She's progressing so fast. 

On Saturday, S. and A. got baptized! It was beautiful! We had a little bit of drama trying to find baptismal clothes...but once the program started, it was beautiful. Hermana Kim and I sang Be Still My Soul (in English...there isn't a version of it in Spanish) with our awesome friend Elder Dunn on the piano. The spirit was SO strong... Cusy (they're mom) was crying and a so was one of the gringo elders. It was beautiful. They both looked so cute and it was a great day. They're going to progress so much with their mom. 

We're working with a lady that we found named R.. She met with the missionaries 6 years ago in Huaraz, but never got baptized because she couldn't quit smoking. Well now she's ready to make some changes in her life. She quit smoking when she got married, but she recently went through a divorce. She picked up smoking again when her kids are with her ex, because she feels alone. We started teaching her every other day this week, and on Friday we taught her the Plan of Salvation and made a plan to help her quite smoking. On Sunday we came back and talked to her about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, focusing on repentance. She began telling us that Friday after we left, was the time when she usually pulls out her cigarettes...but she didn't feel alone, she felt at peace. Saturday she went to smoke, and right before she put it to her lips, she thought "what am I doing?" and threw it away. Tears filled her eyes as she told us that this is the road that she wants to follow. It's amazing to be able to see the Atonement working through someone. The Atonement is REAL. Jesus Christ really can help us overcome all things. I feel so blessed to be a part of this work at this time. 

This is the work of the Lord. This is His Gospel and His church. The power of the priesthood is real, the power of the Atonement can overcome all things. I am so excited for Brett to be able to come join me in the field. Elder Carr, you're going to bless soooo many lives and grow SO much. 

I love you all! Have an awesome week <3 

Hermana Carr 

I Love civilization!

Elder Acero with the Hermanas

June 3, 2014

June 2, 2014

This was another good week for Hermana Carr and Hermana Kim. We didn't have quite as much success finding new people to teach, but we're working hard and I know we'll find new people this week. Today is transfer day, but I don't think it will be affecting us this time around. We're just going to keep on moving.

Well more than anything, I just want to talk about yesterday...because it was an awesome day. I still need to write in my journal about it...

Saturday night I went to bed a little before Hermana Kim. When I woke up the next morning the first thing she said was "No quiero que esta triste...pero..." and explained to me that E, and L's family sent a text last night saying that they weren't able to come to church. If they didn't come that would mean that their baptismal dates would fall...again. I should have been sad, but the minute I started feeling that way, it was replaced with the calm assurance that everything would work itself out. A little disheartened, but not defeated... I got ready for the day then sat down and dedicated myself to my scriptures. I read in 3 Nephi about fasting and prayer in secret...and the blessings that the Lord will bring through it. I got down on my knees and just prayed. Asking for a miracle. Not a minute after I said "amen" the phone rang, Hermana Kim answered, then started jumping up and down mouthing "OH MY GOSH!" She hung up and then told me that by miracle, E's meeting was cancelled and she was able to come. Tears sprang to both of our eyes.

We left to go stop by L's house... and she had recently woke up.... we had 20 minutes before church started. We told her THERE'S STILL TIME and convinced her that she would be able to get the kids ready. We left, picked up C, S, A... went to church and partook of the sacrament...they still hadn't showed up. So we left and called Elizabeth and she said that she and her mom were ready and were walking to L's house. E showed up and went upstairs to help L hurry up haha. Finally we were all ready to go, and we made it to the second half of sacrament meeting. It was seriously a miracle.

Miracle part two. We showed up to church again, and there weren't seats... so we stood in the doors with the elders. one of them pointed out a girl that was sitting in the meeting and told me that she was a friend of a member that is super interested in the church, and lives in OUR area. We were able to meet her afterwards and scheduled an appointment to meet with her the same day. She stayed for all three hours of church. We went to Carmen's house at 5, and shared the Restoration with her. She was super receptive, then explained to us that she had a lot of questions...that she is always asking her Mormon friends at work about what we believe, and that she believes the Lord has given her this curiosity for a reason. Her friend had already given her a Book of Mormon and she had already read through all of the introductory pages. Her questions were sincere and really good and I really think she'll progress rapidly. 

Last night we went to L's house and found R there. He didn't come to church today because he showed up from work at like 4 or 5 in the morning. He drives a delivery truck and so his schedule is really crazy. We were able to read 2 Nephi 31 with him, talked about the importance of baptism, and then talked to him about the blessings he would bring to his family when he joins the church. We explained to him that he's the key to having his family sealed for eternity in the temple, and the longer he puts off his baptism, the longer they have to wait for those blessings. He took it really well and told us that he would start praying and would bring his Book of Mormon to work with him. 

I KNOW that the Lord is looking out for me and the area that I'm in. I know that He is seeing the efforts of Hermana Kim and I, as well as all the love, support, prayers, and fasting you guys are offering on our behalf. I'm so grateful for a family that supports me every step of the way. I think I've finally found the joy that motivates the missionaries to keep on going....this area is teaching me so much.

I love you con TODO MI CORAZON. Les amo bastante y yo se que tengo que servir aquí ahora. El Señor esta ayundando en cada paso que tomo en esta obra. El conoce Sus hijos. Somos Sus hijos y el quiere cada uno de nosotros a poder a recibir los bendiciones del Evangelio, de bautismo y del templo. Yo se que esta es La Iglesia de Jesucristo mismo. El nos ama. El es nuestro Salvador. Solo por medio de El y so evangelio nosotros podemos recibir la vida eterna.

Les amo,
Hermana Carr