August 11, 2014

August 11, 2014

Hey family!

 Glad you got to catch up with some old family friends, and I'm happy to hear about everyone coming and going! AHHHH I'm SO happy for Heather! Tell her congrats and that I love her next time you see her.  Thanks for the clothes mom, I LOVE THEM. I LOOVVEEEED the letter from Sydney too, I was DYING laughing. Glad Kacey is working hard, and mom I'm glad you're going to have a break from school. So glad Vanessa made it home safe. 

Well this week, once again, was a week of going through the motions...searching for new people to teach and trying to make the most of the time Hermana Kim and I have left together. Tuesday we had a training meeting with President Archibald. It was really good. I learned a lot about the importance of the Godhead and the commandments. I always thought about the 10 commandments being separate from tithing, the word of wisdom, all of the otheres that there are...but really it's not that way. Everything is included in the 10 commandments, just like everything begins with the commandment to love God above all else and to love your neighbor. Don't murder....don't murder yourself little by little either, or don't participate in harmful substances...BAM word of wisdom. Don't rob...well duh, DON'T ROB GOD either, TITHING and OFFERINGS. It was so cool to see how President picked apart each commandment and helped us to understand how to explain them to people and help them to live them. It's always so interesting to me because the ten commandments say DONT WORSHIP IDOLS and the biggest problem here are the SANTOS... the saints and virgins that people worship more than the Lord himself. There are hundreds of them and each one has a story with little significance...yet they pray to these dolls in the street. It's sad. 

Well, we have one potential investigator, our new neighbor! She's a single mom named Doris. Her son is the cutest. She's a really sweet lady and we taught her lesson 1 and the 10 commandments like President asked us to, and she accepted a date, so we'll see what happens. 

This week, I felt the Lord helping me know what to say...more than anything to the menos activos we've been working with. Inspired questions are THE KEY to figuring out why people don't go to church. While we didn't have any investigators come to church this week, I was happy to see that the menos activos we visited all showed up. 

Well... I don't have a lot to write about this week haha, sorry. But I hope you know I love you and I love this work. The Lord really knows and prepares His children. I'm sad that Hermana Kim and I are running out of time together. I'm pretty sure both of us will be training this next transfer because in the next three months we're going to be receiving about 80 new missionaries, and I think about half are sisters. Crazy. 

I love you guys. I know that the Gospel is true. I know that this is the work of the Lord and that He is preparing His children to receive the gospel and to be happy NOW. The Plan of Salvation is a wonderful thing. I love teaching it because there is so much hope in the fact that our families are eternal. 


AND THANK YOU TO DEBBIE ROGERS AND GRANDPA & GRANDMA PETERSEN for the birthday packages! I love you so much and I appreciate your thinking of me!

Love you all and hope you have a great week!

Hermana Carr 

August 4, 2014

Hey family,
Thanks for all of the birthday messages! We've had a crrraazzyyy week. And a beautiful one as well. I´m so glad to hear that everyone is okay despite the crazy storms that have been going on.  Give Vanessa a HUGE hug for me and tell her I love her! Sounds like the kids had fun despite the storm, and TJ. I´ll keep the Wetzels in my prayers! Dad, the KFC just serves regular chicken ahah, but they don´t have beans or biscuits...just chicken...potatoes....yeah basically Peru. 

Well. This week was insane. It was really stressful, but also really rewarding. 
We moved into a dump of an apartment...but whatever haha. Our neighbor is a single mom and I´m convinced we´re going to baptize her. 

First of all... I don´t know HOW all of the members remembered that my birthday was the 31st (it´s always one of the first questions they asked when we first got here, they asked when our birthdays were and that was back in May). But just about everyone surprised me and spoiled me rotten. It was kind of stressful because really I didn´t want anybody to know it was my birthday haha. But we went to my pensionista´s house and she had decorated, the kids came and gave me a huge hug, and she made my favorite peruvian food. It was really cute. She even bought a cake and we sang happy birthday in English haha. Then we went and helped an investigator sew Chuckie dolls (she´s a seamstress and some lady asked her to make 50 chuckie dolls...crreeeeppyy). Her name is Lily, she´s a new investigator, and she has a lot of potential to progress in the Gospel. After that we went to visit Hermana Elvira, a menos activa. Then we went to visit Cusy and her girls and they told us how much they loved us and that we´ve really changed their lives.It´s been amazing to see their progress. After that we were walking in the street and two girls ran up to me yelling ¨HERMANA CARR, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Did you already go to Franco´s house for your party?¨ Whattt? Party? ohhhh noooo...... we had an appointment with Franco and Janeth, two recent converts. We showed up and they had a surprise party for me! The members came, there was cake, the whole house was decorated. I couldn´t beeeliieevvee Janeth!!! It was super cute and I was very surprised....not a big fan of the attention though. Then we had to RUN because we thought that Rafael would have his interview that night (FINALLY) we showed up to his house and he still wasnt home, but Liz ALSO remembered my birthday (I feel like Hermana Kim had a hand in this, though she still won´t admit to it). So we had a cake....AGAIN.... and they sang to me...AGAIN. It was super cute and the kids were all excited...needless to say, I think that was the most celebrated birthday I´ve ever had haha, we celebrated like three times. It was really sweet. I feel weird now that I´m 21! 

All of the stress came from the fact that the whole week we couldn´t catch Rafael at home. The poor guy had double shifts at work, because this week was also Peruvian Independence Day, so he had a lot of other shipments to get around Peru. He didn´t even make it home for three straight days. Time was NOT on our side and I was worried that he wasn´t going to have his baptismal interview, and with all that time gone he wouldn´t get baptized. I was so worried. Oh me...of little faith. 
We prayed...hard. Every moment. We showed up at his house every day this week hoping that he would  get home early. He would call us and tell us he was coming early, then later at night when we were  waiting at his house he would say that he had HOURS still before coming home. Time was running out. Saturday was our last chance. We had moved his baptism to Sunday in the morning, because it´s his only day off. We prayed that he would get home early from work. I was beyond stressed out. Really because I love this family so much and I just want them to be sealed next year. I just worried that Rafael´s time away would make him doubt or something.... but Saturday as I was reading my scriptures and read something in D&C 123 17 that really helped me out. This scripture made me remember that we were being diligent, doing everything we could to have this baptism...and that the things I can´t control, I CAN´T CONTROL. So we just needed to trust in the Lord and trust that He would work things out for this family. And He did. Rafael got home early on Saturday and we were able to teach him, he was able to have his interview.

Sunday, bright and early at 7am, Rafael and his son Sebastian got baptized. It was a small meeting, but the spirit was so strong. The focus wasn´t only on their baptism, it was on their goal to be sealed in the temple next year as a family. That has been the motivation for Rafael from the beginning. It was great too because Liz has some cousins that are really strong members of the church that came to support, and one of them was my supervisor in the MTC!!! Crazy right?! He pulled Hna Kim and I aside and told us that he would be helping with rentention and would help Liz and Rafael get to the temple next year. He´s really cool. I felt really good about everything. Rafael and Sebastian both had reallly great blessings when they were confirmed, and Rafael´s two little girls had child´s blessings to be registered in the church. It was a beautiful day. 

With all the stress of the mission, sometimes we forget who´s really in charge. I´m just grateful for the Lord´s hand in my life. I feel His help every day. When things get tough I just remember that He´s been through all of this before, and that according to my diligence and effort, He´s going to help me be successful in His most important mission.

Oh, I also got selected to sing in a small choir for Elder Anderson when he comes this month! I´m stoked! We´re a group of 20 missionaries and we´re going to sing a special musical number in the meeting. Yay for being able to sit up close to the Apostle haha. 

I love you all, don´t forget it!

Hermana Carr 

August 1, 2014

July 27, 2014

Wow, it sounds like you guys had a crazy week! I'm sooooo sorry about all the trees that fell down and that you guys had to live without power for a week! I guess it puts the whole pioneer thing in perspective, doesn't it? I'm glad that everyone is safe! 

Sounds like the trek was a blast. Dad I love the picture of the horse ears looking out over the company. It's really cool. It sounds like the trek was a success and a ton of fun. Kacey, I'm glad you had a good group!!! So glad things went well! Give Uncle Tyler a hug for me if he's still there! 

We had a good week. To be honest... It flew by so fast that I don't really know what to write you guys today haha. More than anything I just want to write about Hermano R. and S. We were so worried all week because he went on his work trip and we weren't able to meet with him until the following Sunday. But he came to church and was super happy and was even telling people that he's getting baptized on Saturday. In Priesthood they talked about Elder Hale's talk "If you love me, keep my commandments". It was perfect. That night we went to visit him and L.. We were able to teach him about the word of wisdom. We were a little nervous about it, because as a truck driver, he really faces everything. His companions smoke to pass the time, drink to celebrate the end of a trip, and drink coffee to stay awake during long trips. He participates with them, more to be a part of the group than anything. So we explained the Word of Wisdom to him and focused on the blessings that come from the companionship of the Holy Ghost. We talked to him about not giving into peer pressure and the things that really matter. Hermana Kim's dad is a cargo boat mechanic, so on his long boat trips he obviously faces all of these same things. R.  was talking about how his co-workers make fun of him when he doesn't participate, and Hermana Kim was able to tell him about her dad's experience, and how really her dad's family is the only one that doesn't have problems, and how often the spirit has helped her dad in these situations. It was a really cool lesson and Rafael accepted to live the Word of Wisdom, because his family and the gospel is more important than what his coworkers think. He really wants to get his family to the temple. 

Well last week I turned 10 in the mission and this time I turn 21 in real life haha. It's crazy how fast time is flying by. Sometimes I can't believe that this is MY life. Who thought I'd be somewhere where they even serve rice with your hamburger...and where the people have birthday parties for catholic saints. My life is so weird haha. But I love it. I'm so grateful for the things I've learned in year 20. I can't believe most of it was spent in Peru. It's been a long road, but the most rewarding one. How else could I say that I speak two languages (three if you count "Spokanese"...the language I speak when Hermana Kim doesn't understand my English haha). How else could I have seen so many miracles, been so greatly humbled, been able to have friends from a dozen different countries, and more than anything, how else would I have grown this close to my Savior? I think it takes a mission...or something equally difficult and dedicated, to teach us how small we really are in the world...and how at the same time our Savior knows us perfectly. I've never been so humbled, but I've also never felt so confident in my life. I'm so grateful for the miracles the Lord is working in me. I'm so grateful that I've had the opportunity to be an instrument in His hands. There is nothing more satisfying, no feeling more beautiful than being present in a baptism where you've helped someone find and become converted to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I never thought that this would be part of God's plan for me, but I'm so grateful that it is. I love the people of Peru. I love my family. I love the Gospel...and that's why I'm here. That love grows more every day. Thanks for letting me serve and for supporting me along the way. I sure love you guys. 

I hope you have an awesome week and that you don't have any more torrential storms! BE SAFE and remember I love you tons!!! 


Les amo,
<3 Hermana Carr
July 21, 2014

Hey family! Sounds like you guys had a great week. It's so crazy that Jonathan and Garrett are home now too! Seriously I feel like everyone just barely left! Tell them both hi for me and congrats, I'm sure they both served so well! Tell Mrs. Albin I'm so sorry about Molly :( I know how much they loved that dog!!! KACEY, JAKE, TJ---- stop fighting and make good use of your time. Turn off the video games and go play outside. You better learn to love each other NOW, because you're going to miss each other when you're older. Dad, thanks for the tip on Grace, I'll study that tomorrow. Glad the boys had fun at the ranch and I hope that the trek is a complete success! Hug Tyler for me! Mom keep working hard with school!!!! You're such a trooper, I still don't know how you do it. 

I JUST GOT MY PACKAGE :) I haven't opened it yet, but THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. I love you guys a ton.

Hermana Flor just sent me a birthday present too. I just got it with your package. She knitted me a peruvian style winter hat, super cute. And she sent me measuring tape because she wants to sew me traditional Caraz clothes to wear home. I can't believe her. She's the most adorable lady. Keep the Castillo family in your prayers, they deserve all the blessings in the world.

This was a beautiful week. The Lord's reminding me that He loves me, He trusts me, and that this is HIS work, not mine.

President Archibald sent an email challenging us to reconsider our mission goals, write them down, and START achieving them. I'm obedient, but like everyone, there are little things that I needed to work on. As I've focused on serving the Lord because I LOVE HIM, I'm seeing miraculous results. I was reading a talk by Elder Holland a few days ago from the 2012 October Conference. It's about Christ when He met with the Apostles after his ressurection "Peter, Do you love me?" "Feed my sheep and save my lambs". It struck right at my heart. Do I really love the Lord? Am I really serving Him with my WHOLE being? It changed my perspective completely. I've been working like crazy.

Hermano S., the single dad that we started teaching last week...IS PROGRESSING! He has a date for August 16, so keep him in your prayers. We're working with him, he has a lot of questions but he has the desire to KNOW and that's a great thing. 

Last night was probably one of the most special moments of my mission. For time, I'm going to copy and edit what I wrote to President (we got to internet late this morning). We were finally able to have our lesson with Hermano R. (the one who's wife is recently reactivated and who has a 10yr old that wants to get baptized). We had the idea to have the bishop meet with R. and his wife together, just to get to know him and help him see the plans and goals that his wife is setting as a member of the church. We were blessed to teach him twice this week, which almost never happens. He came home while we were teaching his wife about the importance of the temple, and so we turned the focus on him. Then last night we were able to meet with him. His wife always talks about how he loves movies, and we've been trying to figure out how to help him understand the importance of receiving an answer and the Restoration. We decided to share the short Joseph Smith video with him. The spirit was so strong. He asked a question about the sacerdocio, and Hermana Kim bore powerful testimony to him that the power of God has been restored and that HE can be the priesthood holder in his home. I bore testimony too, and we talked about how the priesthood is a blessing for all the children of God AND their families. It was amazing. Then we did what you told us to. We explained to him that we want him to be baptized on the 2nd of August. We talked for a few moments then I told him that his wife was going to pray, and explained to her to express her hopes for her family and the gospel, and for her husband to be baptized. Then S. to pray that his dad can get an answer and that they can get baptized together on the second. Then R. to ask God if he loves him, if the church is true, and if he should get baptized with S.on the second. It was beautiful. L. began crying before she even finished opening her prayer. We were all crying, down to R.. S. said "Estoy seguro que voy a bautizarme con mi papa esta 2 de agosto". Then R. prayed and told us that he would do it. Please keep praying for him that he'll be firm in his answer. We do everything we can to help him in his progression, but it's so hard to contact him and find him at home with his job. The great thing is this following weekend he has vacation for the holiday, so we're going to have a "teaching marathon" and visit every day that he's home. PRAY PRAY PRAY FOR LA FAMILIA SEGURA FLORES :)  

I know that the Lord wants to seal Rafael and his family for time and all eternity. I feel such an inner peace this week as I know that I really am giving my all to this work. I'm trying each day to become better and to do a little more. Please pray for Rafael. I've never wanted anything more than to see this family get sealed in the temple, and that's going to start with Rafael's baptism. Pray that he can get baptized on the 2nd of August.

I KNOW that the Priesthood has been restored to the earth. I know that God is our LOVING Heavenly Father, Christ is His loving Son, and they both want all of the families in the world to have the blessings of the priesthood IN THEIR HOMES. For those that don't have priesthood holders in their homes...Dad....Brett...Jake...any other priesthood holder that might be reading this...that's where YOU come in. You have a gift and responsibility to bless your OWN family and the people around you. This is something that you can't keep to yourself. You need to bless the lives of those in the ward that don't have the blessing of having the priesthood in their own homes. Be good home teachers. That's all I'm asking. 

This is God's work. This is the work of SALVATION. Not just the work of baptizing, bringing new members to the church, learning Spanish and Peruvian culture... THIS IS ALL ABOUT BRINGING PEOPLE TO CHRIST, SEALING FAMILIES FOR ETERNITY, AND BRINGING TO PASS THE IMMORTALITY AND ETERNAL LIFE OF MAN. THIS IS THE WORK OF OUR HEAVENLY FATHER. We are the most important thing to Him in all the universe. 

I love you all. Thank you for your sacrifices, prayers, and support on my behalf. Dad. Thanks for being a worthy priesthood holder in our home. Mom, thanks for supporting the priesthood and for raising two (and almost three) worthy priesthood holders. Brett and Jake, hold your priesthood worthily, and bless the lives of those around you.

I love you guys so much. 

Hermana Carr